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Latino Daily News

Monday June 11, 2012

Hispanics in the U.S. More Likely to Die While Waiting for a Heart Transplant

Hispanics in the U.S. More Likely to Die While Waiting for a Heart Transplant

Photo: Hispanics in the U.S. More Likely to Die While Waiting for a Heart Transplant

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A recent study headed by Dr. Tajinder P. Singh of Boston Children’s Hospital found Hispanics on the waiting list for a heart transplant in the U.S. are more likely to die than white patients.

The study, titled Racial and Ethnic Differences in Wait-List Outcomes in Patients Listed for Heart Transplantation in the United States, which was published in the journal Circulation, investigated the racial/ethnic differences in wait-list outcomes among patients waiting for heart transplants in the U.S.

Dr. Singh and his team of researchers compared wait-list and post-transplant in-hospital mortality rates among white, black and Hispanic patients 18 and older between July 2006 and September 2010.

Of 10,377 patients analyzed, 71 percent were white, 21 percent were black and 8 percent were Hispanic. Overall, 10.5 percent of white, 11.6 percent of black and 13.4 percent of Hispanic candidates died on the wait-list or became too sick to transplant within 1-yr of listing.

When the researchers adjusted for baseline risk factors, it was determined Hispanic heart transplant patients were at higher risk of dying while on the wait list compared to white patients but not black patients.

The cause for the disparities was unclear, though it was also revealed that black and Hispanic patients tended to be sicker by the time they were put on the list.

It was also discovered blacks are at a higher risk of death after heart transplant surgery, but not at a higher risk of dying while still on the wait list.