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Liver Transplant Patient and Graft Survival Studied

Patient survival similar for transplants due to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, alcoholic cirrhosis

MONDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Patient survival and graft survival after liver transplantation are similar for patients whose transplant results from either nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) or alcoholic cirrhosis (ETOH), according to a study in the December issue of Liver Transplantation.

Vishal Bhagat, M.D., of the University of Miami, and colleagues conducted a retrospective chart review for 280 patients who underwent liver transplantation for cirrhosis resulting from NASH or ETOH. Patient mortality and graft survival for the two groups were compared.

Overall, the researchers found no significant difference in patient mortality between the two groups. In both groups, sepsis was the leading cause of death (53 percent in NASH and 43 percent in ETOH), with cardiovascular events the second leading cause in NASH (26 percent versus 7 percent in ETOH) and malignancies the second leading cause in ETOH (29 percent versus 0 percent in NASH). Both recurrent steatohepatitis and acute rejection were significantly more frequent in NASH than in ETOH (33 versus 0 percent and 41 versus 23 percent, respectively). Graft failure occurred in 24 percent of patients in NASH and 18 percent in ETOH.

"In conclusion, despite a numerical trend favoring the ETOH group, there were no statistically significant differences in post-transplant survival and cardiovascular mortality between the NASH and ETOH groups. Acute rejection and recurrent steatohepatitis were significantly more frequent in the NASH group but did not lead to higher rates of retransplantation," authors write.

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