Home About us Current issue Ahead of Print Back issues Submission Instructions Advertise Contact Login   

Search Article 
Advanced search 
Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation
Users online: 337 Home Bookmark this page Print this page Email this page Small font sizeDefault font size Increase font size 

ORIGINAL ARTICLE Table of Contents   
Year : 2009  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 198-200
Fasting ramadan in kidney transplant patients is safe

Nephrology Division, Tawam Hospital, Johns Hopkins Medicine – Al Ain, United Arab Emirates

Click here for correspondence address and email


Muslims with renal transplant often ask their doctors whether fasting Ramadan is safe. Scanty studies have addressed this question. This prospective study was undertaken to identify any clinical or biological changes with Muslim fasting. 22 kidney transplant patients with stable kidney functions, who were transplanted for more than one year, and voluntarily chose to fast during Ramadan in 1425 H (October-November 2004), were studied. Total of 22 subjects (10 men and 12 women) with a mean age of 47 ± 11.6 years were studied. Full clinical and biological assessment was done before during and after the month of Ramadan fasting. Medications were taken in two divided doses at sunset (time of breaking the fast) and pre dawn (before the fast). None of the patients experienced any undue fatigue, or symptoms. Body weight, blood pressure, kidney function tests, blood sugar, lipid profile, and cyclosporine levels remained stable. In conclusion it is safe for renal transplant recipients of more than one year and having stable graft function to fast during the month of Ramadan; however caution is advised for moderate to severe impaired renal function.

Keywords: Fasting, Ramadan, Muslim, Renal transplant

How to cite this article:
Boobes Y, Bernieh B, Al Hakim M R. Fasting ramadan in kidney transplant patients is safe. Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl 2009;20:198-200

How to cite this URL:
Boobes Y, Bernieh B, Al Hakim M R. Fasting ramadan in kidney transplant patients is safe. Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl [serial online] 2009 [cited 2023 Feb 9];20:198-200. Available from: https://www.sjkdt.org/text.asp?2009/20/2/198/45521

   Introduction Top

Fasting during Ramadan is a religious duty for all healthy adult Muslims. Though the patients are exempted, most of the Muslim with renal transplant recipients are keen to observe the fast.

In normal subjects, during fasting Ramadan, urinary volume, osmolality, pH, nitrogen, solute and electrolyte excretion remain normal. [1] Changes in serum urea and creatinine are usually small and not statistically significant, [2],[3] as well as the alterations in serum sodium and potassium. [3]

There is paucity of studies addressing this issue in kidney transplant patients. None of them show any deleterious effect on kidney functions. [4],[5],[6] We conducted a prospective study during the month of Ramadan to find out the clinical or biological changes during fasting in renal transplant patients.

   Patients and Methods Top

Three months prior to Ramadan patients ful­-filling the study criteria were registered and given three appointments: a month prior to, during and after the month of Ramadan fas­ting. Full clinical and biological (blood tests) assessment was done in the three occasions. Inclusion criteria were: Transplanted for more than one year, with stable kidney functions, and voluntary consent to observe the fast. Ex­clusion criteria were any acute illness imme­diately prior to and during the month of fasting.

A total of 22 kidney transplant recipients com­pleted the study (10 males and 12 females); the mean age of the patients was 47 ± 11.6 (range: 25-69) years. Mean GFR was 68.2 ± 25.6, ma­jority (n=16) had GFR > 50 mL/min/1.73m 2 (estimated by MDRD equation) and the re­maining 6 had GFR < 50 mL/min/1.73m 2 , (The mean post transplant period was 78.8 ± 61.7 (14-250) months. Eighteen (82%) had living non-related donor and 4 living related donor transplants. 19 patients were on triple immunosupression regimen.

During Ramadan medications were taken at sunset and pre dawn, blood and urine samples were taken just before "Iftar" and around 12 hours after last dose of calcineurin inhibitor. Co morbid conditions like hypertension, dys­lipidemia and diabetes mellitus were found in 20, 9 and 5 patients respectively.

Unpaired 2 tail Student's t test was used and p< 0.05 was considered significant.

The study was approved by our ethics committee.

   Results Top

All patients managed to fast the whole month of Ramadan. The fasting time during Ramadan 1425 H (2004 AD) was around 12:30 h. None of the patients had any undue clinical symp­toms or signs and no significant changes in any clinical or biological parameters during or after Ramadan, [Table 1].

   Discussion Top

Our results are in agreement with the others, [4],[6] and indicate that fasting during the month of Ramadan is not associated with any significant adverse effect in our stable renal transplant recipients.

We did not find any significant change in patients' weight and BP during and after the fast. The renal function remained stable as re­flected by the absence of any significant diffe­rence in s. creatinine, urea and electrolytes during the period of study. No significant difference in lipid profile except triglycerides showed significant improvement during fas­ting that reversed after Ramadan.

In conclusion, it is safe for a kidney trans­plant recipient for more than one year, with stable kidney functions to fast during the Ra­madan month. Caution is however suggested for patients with significantly low esti-mated GFR who may require more frequent moni­toring of renal functions.

   References Top

1.Cheah SH, Chng SL, Hussein R, Ducan MT. Effects of fasting during Ramadan on urinary excretion in Malaysian Muslims. Br J Nutr 1990;63:329-37.  Back to cited text no. 1    
2.Sliman NA, Khatib FA. Effect of fasting Ramadan on body weight and some blood constituents of healthy Muslims. Nutr Rep Intern 1988;38:1299-306.  Back to cited text no. 2    
3.El-Hazmi MAF, Al-Faleh FZ, Al-Mofleh IB. Effect of Ramadan fasting on the values of hematological and biochemical parameters. Saudi Med J 1987;8:171-6.  Back to cited text no. 3    
4.Bernieh B, Mohamed A, Wafa A. Ramadhan fasting and renal transplant recipients: Clinical and biochemical effects. Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl 1994;5(4):470-3.  Back to cited text no. 4    
5.Abdalla A, Shaheen F, Rassoul Z, et al. Effect of Ramadan fasting on Moslem kidney transplant recipients. Am J Nephrol 1998;18: 101-4.  Back to cited text no. 5    
6.Ouziala M, Ouziala S, Dellaoui A, Drif M. Fasting during the first year of transplantation: Is it safe? Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl 1998; 9(4):440-3.  Back to cited text no. 6    

Correspondence Address:
Yousef Boobes
Department of Medicine, Tawam Hospital-Johns Hopkins Medicine, P.O. Box 15258, Al Ain
United Arab Emirates
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 19237803

Rights and PermissionsRights and Permissions


  [Table 1]

This article has been cited by
1 Renal diseases and Ramadan: A review of the literature
Taha, I.
Life Science Journal. 2013; 10(3): 450-458
2 A comparison of the effects of ramadan fasting and regular aerobic exercise on 70-Kda heat shock protein (Hsp70), lipid profiles and resistance insulin in non-active obese men
Moazami, M. and Bijeh, N. and Abbasian, S.
Iranian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism. 2013; 15(1): 67-77
3 The effect of ramadan fasting and physical activity on body composition, serum osmolarity levels and some parameters of electrolytes in females
Attarzadeh Hosseini, S.R. and Sardar, M.A. and Hejazi, K. and Farahati, S.
International Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism. 2013; 11(2): 88-94
4 Recommendations for fasting in ramadan for patients on peritoneal dialysis
Al Wakeel, J. and Mitwalli, A.H. and Alsuwaida, A. and Al Ghonaim, M. and Usama, S. and Hayat, A. and Shah, I.H.
Peritoneal Dialysis International. 2013; 33(1): 86-91
5 Effect of fasting for ramadan on kidney graft function during the hottest month of the year (August) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Qurashi, S. and Tamimi, A. and Jaradat, M. and Sayyari, A.A.
Experimental and Clinical Transplantation. 2012; 10(6): 551-553


    Similar in PUBMED
    Search Pubmed for
    Search in Google Scholar for
  Related articles
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

    Patients and Methods
    Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded1697    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 5    

Recommend this journal