Exercise to Treat Frailty in Kidney Transplant Candidates


About this study

Frailty is a condition characterized by slowness, weakness, low physical activity, wasting, and exhaustion. Frailty increases the risk for adverse outcomes following transplant such as increased length of stay in the hospital, mortality, or graft function. No interventions for frailty are known for patients with renal disease, but exercise programs like pulmonary rehabilitation have been effective in improving frailty in patients with other diseases, such as lung disease. The goal of this study is to test whether exercise will also improve frailty among patients who are waiting for a kidney transplant and who are considered frail or pre-frail.

Participation eligibility

Participant eligibility includes age, gender, type and stage of disease, and previous treatments or health concerns. Guidelines differ from study to study, and identify who can or cannot participate. There is no guarantee that every individual who qualifies and wants to participate in a trial will be enrolled. Contact the study team to discuss study eligibility and potential participation.

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Aged 18 years or older.
  • Consenting to research.
  • Varying level of kidney function
  • An SPPB score ≤ 10 or considered frail or pre-frail by frailty phenotype (FP).

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Younger than 18 years of age.
  • Patients listed for heart or lung transplants.
  • Terminal illness with a prognosis of less than 6 months.
  • Significant comorbidities that limit rehabilitation potential including pulmonary disease requiring continuous oxygen supplementation, active angina, critical aortic sclerosis, decompensated heart failure, or known ventricular arrhythmia.
  • Kidney transplant candidates without cardiac clearance for transplant.
  • An SPPB score > 10 or not considered frail or pre-frail by FP.
  • Non-English speaker without availability of adequate interpreter services (safety concern).
  • Failure to pass submaximal exercise test.

Participating Mayo Clinic locations

Study statuses change often. Please contact the study team for the most up-to-date information regarding possible participation.

Mayo Clinic Location Status Contact

Rochester, Minn.

Mayo Clinic principal investigator

Cassie Kennedy, M.D.

Closed for enrollment

Contact information:

Renee Weatherly



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