Encouraging results of split-liver transplantation
Mirza, D F × Achilleos, O Pirenne, Jacques Buckels, J A McMaster, P Mayer, A D #
British Journal of Surgery vol:85 issue:4 pages:494-7
BACKGROUND: Liver donor shortage presently accounts for a 10 per cent waiting list mortality rate. Split-liver transplantation (SLT) can improve utilization of this scarce resource. METHODS: Twenty-four SLTs (11 left, 13 right grafts) from 13 livers were performed in 23 patients (nine adults, 14 children), comprising 4.5 per cent of all orthotopic liver transplants (14 urgent or emergency, ten elective). The left graft comprised segments II and III, whereas the right graft comprised segments V-VIII in eight cases, IV-VIII in three, and segments I, IV-VIII, and I, V-VIII in one case each. Additional arterial extension grafts were required in six of 24 cases, and portal venous interposition graft in one. RESULTS: Twenty-one grafts showed good initial function, with one primary non-function and two initial poor function. The median peak aspartate aminotransferase level was 782 (range 94-2301) and 982 (range 382-2520) units/l for left and right grafts respectively. Five patients died (all urgent recipients), all within the first 30 days after surgery. Two SLT recipients underwent subsequent retransplantation. All ten elective recipients are alive. The 1-year actuarial patient and graft survival rates at a median follow-up of 20 months were 78 and 68 per cent respectively. CONCLUSION: These encouraging results compare favourably with those of reduced-size and whole-liver transplantation and justify wider application of this technique, thereby optimizing donor resource use.