Background. Statin use in renal transplantation has been associated with a lower risk of patient death but not with an improvement of graft functional survival. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of statin use in graft survival, death-censored graft survival and patient survival using the data recorded on the Spanish Late Allograft Dysfunction Study Group.
Patients and methods. Patients receiving a renal allograft in Spain in 1990, 1994, 1998 and 2002 were considered. Since the mean follow-up in the 2002 cohort was 3 years, statin use was analysed considering its introduction during the first year or during the initial 2 years after transplantation. Univariate and multivariate Cox regression analyses with a propensity score for statin use were employed to analyse graft survival, death-censored graft survival and patient survival.
Results. In the 4682 evaluated patients, the early statin use after transplantation significantly increased from 1990 to 2002 (12.7%, 27.9%, 47.7% and 53.0%, P < 0.001). Statin use during the first year was not associated with graft or patient survival. Statin use during the initial 2 years was associated with a lower risk of graft failure (relative risk [RR] = 0.741 and 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.635–0.866, P < 0.001) and patient death (RR = 0.806 and 95% CI = 0.656–0.989, P = 0.039). Death-censored graft survival was not associated with statin use during the initial 2 years.
Conclusion. The early introduction of statin treatment after transplantation is associated with a significant decrease in late graft failure due to a risk reduction in patient death.