NATIONAL HARBOR, Md.—Hemodialysis (HD) patients awaiting a kidney transplant must have a two-year cancer-free period immediately preceding transplantation.

However, study findings presented at the National Kidney Foundation 2012 Spring Clinical Meetings suggest that patients with prostate cancer (PCa) might be better served by undergoing transplantation instead of waiting two years to be declared cancer-free.

Vivek Agarwal, MD, and colleagues at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, N.J., analyzed data from the United Network for Organ Sharing to determine the outcome of PCa in renal transplant recipients. The study included 32 male HD patients aged 46-78 years diagnosed with PCa within six months after renal transplantation.

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Within the first two years post-transplant, 13 patients were alive and cancer-free, 18 were alive with cancer, and one died from PCa. The two-year mortality rate was 3.1% (0.08% to 16.2%). Even the 16.2% rate is well below the estimated 38.2% who would die while on HD, the investigators pointed out in a poster presentation. Thus, PCa patients would have survival benefit from early renal transplantation, they concluded.