Background: Language barriers are associated with worse health outcomes in the general population but data in kidney transplantation is lacking. This study tested the hypothesis that non-native English speakers using interpreters have poorer outcomes after kidney transplantation compared to native English speakers.
Methods: A single-center retrospective study analyzing all kidney allograft recipients transplanted between 2007-2015, with data linkage between various electronic patient records to create comprehensive database.
Results: Data was extracted for 1,140 patients, with median follow up 4.4 years’ post-transplantation. Ethnicity breakdown was; Caucasian (72.1%), black (5.5%), south Asian (17.6%) and other 4.7%). Interpreters had been requested for 40 kidney allograft recipients, with the commonest language required being Urdu/Punjabi (n=25). Patients requiring interpreting services were more likely to be of south Asian ethnicity (80.0% of users versus 15.4% of non-users, p<0.001) and female (60.0% of users versus 39.5% of non-users, p=0.008). Recipients using versus not using interpreters had less kidney allograft rejection (2.5% versus 14.8% respectively, p=0.014). There was no difference between groups for development of post-transplant diabetes, cardiac events, cerebrovascular accidents, and cancer or patient/graft survival.
Published on: Jun 1, 2017 Pages: 20-25