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To elucidate the long-term effects of cyclosporine, we retrospectively studied 310 consecutive patients who have undergone cardiac transplantation at our institution since December 1980 and in whom immunosuppression has been maintained with cyclosporine. The ages of recipients ranged from 1 month to 64 years and of donors from 1 month to 48 years. The actuarial survival rates for cyclosporine-treated patients were 80.7% at 1 year and 59.7% at 5 years and were significantly greater than those for previous patients not treated with cyclosporine (p less than 0.005). Their actuarial prevalence of rejection was 60.0% at 1 month and 86.9% at 1 year; 206 patients are living. The actuarial prevalence of lymphoma development was 4.6% at 5 years but has been significantly lower with the current immunosuppression protocol of lower doses of cyclosporine, and OKT3 in place of rabbit anti-thymocyte globulin (p less than 0.005). Infection remains the most common cause of death. Recipients less than 50 years of age had a significantly higher actuarial survival than older recipients (p less than 0.01). Male and female recipients had similar overall prevalence of survival and rejection, but men died of graft atherosclerosis significantly more frequently (p less than 0.005). Rehabilitation has been successful in 85% of patients surviving 1 year after transplantation. Of those surviving 1 year, 96.5% were in New York Heart Association class I. Thus the results of orthotopic cardiac transplantation have improved since the introduction of cyclosporine and have allowed measured liberalization of the criteria for recipient selection.
View details for Web of Science ID A1990CT22700016
View details for PubMedID 2308368