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Although increased longevity of grafts has led to a growing number of long-term kidney transplant recipients, knowledge about the perceived health of these patients remains limited. A cross-sectional sample of 609 patients (60% response) was stratified into a short-term (≤1 year), midterm (>1 and ≤8 years), and long-term cohort (>8 and ≤15 years posttransplantation). Cohorts were compared for perceived health (Visual Analogue Scale of the EQ-5D), number of symptoms, and number of comorbidities by analysis of variance/covariance and multivariate regression analyses. Long-term patients reported more symptoms, (F[2, 606] = 3.09, P = .046) and more comorbidities, (F[2, 588] = 4.75, P = .009) but similar levels of perceived health, (F[2, 550] = 2.37, P > .05). Furthermore, symptoms were less influential for perceived health among long- versus short-term (z = -2.08, P = .038) or midterm cohorts (z = -2.60, P = .009). Previously identified predictors of perceived health accounted for less variance in the long-term as opposed to short-term (z = 4.30, P < .001) and midterm cohort (z = 2.07, P = .039). Despite more symptoms and comorbidities, the perceived health of long-term kidney transplant recipients was comparable to the short- and midterm, possibly due to selective survival or patient adjustment. Because kidney function and symptoms were predominantly associated with short-term perceived health, there is an urgent need to identify variables associated with long-term perceived health.

Original publication




Journal article


Transplant Proc

Publication Date





2184 - 2190


Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Chi-Square Distribution, Comorbidity, Cross-Sectional Studies, Female, Health Care Surveys, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, Health Status, Health Status Indicators, Humans, Kidney Transplantation, Linear Models, Male, Middle Aged, Multivariate Analysis, Perception, Surveys and Questionnaires, Time Factors, Treatment Outcome, Young Adult