To report the incidence, risk factors, and outcome of severe COVID-19 disease in kidney transplant recipients attending a Saudi hospital at a single center in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
A retrospective chart-based cohort study involving all kidney transplant recipients tested for COVID-19 in the Armed Forces Hospital Southern Region, KSA.
Of 532 kidney transplant recipients who reported to the center, from March 2020 to June 2022, 180 were tested for COVID-19. Of these recipients, 31 (17%) tested positive. Among the 31 positive recipients, 11 were treated at home, 15 were admitted to the noncritical isolation ward, and 5 were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU). Older age (P = .0001), higher body mass index (P = .0001), and history of hypertension (P = .0023) were more frequent in the COVID-19-positive recipients. Admission to the ICU was more frequent in older recipients (P = .0322) with a history of ischemic heart disease (P = .06) and higher creatinine baseline (P = .08) presenting with dyspnea (P = .0174), and acute allograft dysfunction (P = .002). In the ICU group, 4 (80%) patients required hemodialysis, and 4 (80%) died.
Kidney transplant recipients with COVID-19 could have a higher risk for developing acute kidney injury, dialysis, and mortality than the general population. ICU admission and renal replacement therapy were more evident in older recipients with a history of ischemic heart disease, presenting with shortness of breath (P = .017) and a higher serum creatinine baseline. Acute allograft dysfunction was the independent predictor of mortality among patients admitted to the ICU.

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