A study published by the scientific journal
The Lancet Public Health
shows the drop in the number of solid organ transplants since the start of the pandemic.
In 22 countries, organ transplants fell by nearly 31% during the first wave in spring 2020, and nearly 16% over the whole of 2020.
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For the authors of the study, two reasons are at the origin of this decrease: first "
the considerable burden of the care of Covid-19 patients for the health system
", and then "
the increased risks of 'infection for transplant and therefore immunocompromised patients
Our study confirms that the pandemic has considerable consequences on many medical specialties
", analyzes Professor Alexandre Loupy, director of the Inserm Center for Translational Research on Organ Transplantation in Paris and the last author of the study.
More precisely, among all the transplants carried out, kidney transplantation is the most affected in almost all countries: a drop of 40% in 2020 compared to 2019. Concerning transplants from deceased donors, a reduction in kidney transplants (-12%), liver (-9%), lung (-17%) and heart (-5%) were observed.
Thanks to statistical modeling calculations, the authors demonstrated that this decrease "would
correspond to the loss of more than 48,000 years of life for the patients
": 37,664 years for the patients who are waiting for a kidney, 7370 years for those waiting for a liver, 1799 years for a lung and 1406 years for a heart.
That is a total of 48,239 years of life lost.