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AIM: We systematically reviewed published outcome measures across randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of donor management interventions. METHODS: The systematic review was conducted in accordance with recommendations by the Cochrane Handbook and Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses statement. We searched MEDLINE, Embase, CENTRAL, Web of Science, and trial databases from 1980 to February 2021 for RCTs of donor management interventions. RESULTS: Twenty-two RCTs (n=3432 donors) were included in our analysis. Fourteen RCTs (63.6%) reported a primary outcome relating to a single organ only. Eight RCTs primarily focused on aspects of donor optimisation in critical care. Thyroid hormones and methylprednisolone were the most commonly evaluated interventions (five and four studies, respectively). Only two studies, focusing on single organs (e.g. kidney), evaluated outcomes relating to other organs. The majority of studies evaluated physiological or biomarker-related outcomes. No study evaluated recipient health-related quality of life. Only one study sought consent from potential organ recipients. CONCLUSIONS: The majority of RCTs evaluating donor management interventions only assessed single-organ outcomes or effects on donor stability in critical care. There is a need for an evaluation of patient-centred recipient outcomes and standardisation and reporting of outcome measures for future donor management RCTs.

Original publication




Journal article


Br J Anaesth

Publication Date





745 - 759


clinical trials, core outcome set, organ donation, organ donor management, outcome measures, systematic review, transplantation, Biomarkers, Critical Care, Humans, Informed Consent, Organ Transplantation, Outcome Assessment, Health Care, Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic, Research Design, Tissue Donors, Tissue and Organ Procurement