Eosinophilic esophagitis in children following cardiac transplantation: Association with post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder and other transplant outcomes

Kindel, S. J.; Joy, B. F.; Pahl, E.; Wald, E. L.

Pediatr Transplant. 2014 Jun 17; 18(5):491-6


Although cardiac transplantation is life-saving, morbidities from immunosuppression are significant. EoE is a complication of calcineurin inhibitors following liver transplant causing feeding intolerance, weight loss, vomiting, and dysphagia. There are limited reports of EoE following heart transplantation. We performed a retrospective single-center review of pediatric cardiac transplant patients from 2000 to 2010. A case-control analysis of patients with and without EoE was performed evaluating heart transplantation outcomes such as rates of rejection, CAV, PTLD, and graft loss. Eighty-six transplants were performed in 84 patients; 34 (40%) underwent diagnostic endoscopy, and 10 (12%) had EoE. Median time to diagnosis of EoE was 3.7 yr (IQR: 2.0-5.2). There were no differences in demographics or use of induction medications between patients with or without EoE. Patients with EoE had fewer episodes of treated rejection (1.0 vs. 2.5; p = 0.04). Four of 10 (40%) EoE patients had PTLD compared with only 2/24 (8%) of those without EoE (p = 0.048; OR 7.33 [95% CI: 1.1-50.2]). There were no differences in CAV or graft loss between groups. EoE should be considered as a cause of GI symptoms in children after cardiac transplantation and may be associated with fewer rejection episodes and increased rates of PTLD, thus representing a marker of over-immunosuppression.

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