BACKGROUND: Patients on the renal transplant waiting list and renal transplant recipients have an increased risk of premature cardiovascular (CV) disease and death. METHODS: We performed a prospective observational study in 331 kidney or kidney-pancreas transplant recipients to test whether Troponin I (TnI), determined at time of engraftment, can help to identify patients at risk for a major adverse cardiac event (MACE) in the immediate postoperative period. Logistic regression analysis was used to test if pretransplant TnI is a predictor of MACE within 3 months after transplantation. RESULTS: Eleven patients (3.3%) developed a MACE during the first 2 weeks after transplantation. In patients with a CV history (23.6%), the incidence of MACE increased to 13.4%. In univariate analysis, age (odds ratio [OR] 1.062, P=0.04), TnI (OR 1.12, P=0.0042), HbA1c (OR 1.879, P=0.0076), and CV history (absent vs. present OR 0.027, P=0.0006) were associated with MACE. TnI remained an independent predictor after adjusting for every other significant variable. When we restricted the analysis to patients with a CV history, TnI was the only statistically significant variable associated with MACE. CONCLUSION: Elevated TnI, immediately pretransplant, is an independent predictor of MACE in the immediate posttransplant period, particularly in patients with CV history.