Blood Transfusion Requirement During Liver Transplantation is an Important Risk Factor for Mortality.

Dumont-UCLA Transplant and Liver Cancer Centers, Pfleger Liver Institute, Department of Surgery, Department of Anesthesiology, David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California, Los Angeles, CA. Electronic address: .
Journal of the American College of Surgeons (Impact Factor: 4.45). 03/2013; DOI: 10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2012.12.047
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT BACKGROUND: Blood loss during liver transplantation is not incorporated into the dominant models for post-transplant survival. Our objective was to investigate blood transfusion requirement as a risk factor for mortality after liver transplantation, and to further analyze risk factors for intraoperative blood transfusion requirement and hepatectomy time. STUDY DESIGN: We conducted a retrospective analysis of 233 consecutive liver transplant recipients over a span of 3 years by a single experienced surgeon. Mean follow-up was 2.5 years. Independent risk factors for patient survival after liver transplantation were identified using Cox proportion hazard regression. Independent risk factors for intraoperative blood transfusion requirement and hepatectomy time were identified using logistic regression. RESULTS: Two factors were identified as significant predictors in multivariate analysis for survival after liver transplantation: hepatocellular carcinoma (hazard ratio [HR] 1.9, 95% CI 1.1 to 3.2) and intraoperative blood transfusion requirement per unit (HR 1.01, 95% CI 1.0 to 1.02). Threshold analysis revealed that intraoperative blood transfusion volume ≥28 units or 85th percentile (HR 2.5, 95% CI 1.3 to 4.7) was a significant risk factor for patient survival. Four covariates were identified as significant risk factors for intraoperative blood requirement: warm ischemia time (odds ratio [OR] 1.12, 95% CI 1.06 to 1.18), bilirubin (OR 1.04, 95% CI 1.02 to 1.08), previous surgery (OR 1.7, 95% CI 1.02 to 2.9), and hepatectomy time (OR 1.01, 95% CI 1.00 to 1.02). The only risk factor for prolonged hepatectomy time was previous major abdominal surgery (OR 4.0, 95% CI 1.7 to 9.5). CONCLUSIONS: Intraoperative blood transfusion requirement is an important risk factor for mortality after liver transplantation. The strongest risk factors for intraoperative blood transfusion requirement are warm ischemia time and bilirubin levels. Intraoperative blood loss and its risk factors should be incorporated into models to predict survival after liver transplantation.

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    ABSTRACT: Introduction. This study's objective was to identify risk factors associated with reoperation for bleeding following liver transplantation (LTx). Methods. A retrospective study was performed at a single institution between 2001 and 2012. Operative reports were used to identify patients who underwent reoperation for bleeding within 2 weeks following LTx (operations for nonbleeding etiologies were excluded). Results. Reoperation for bleeding was observed in 101/928 (10.8%) of LTx patients. The following characteristics were associated with reoperation on multivariable analysis: recipient MELD score (OR 1.06/MELD unit, 95% CI 1.03, 1.09), number of platelets transfused (OR 0.73/platelet unit, 95% CI 0.58, 0.91), and aminocaproic acid utilization (OR 0.46, 95% CI 0.27, 0.80). LTx patients who underwent reoperation for bleeding had a longer ICU stay (5 days ± 7 versus 2 days ± 3, P < 0.001) and hospitalization (18 days ± 9 versus 10 days ± 18, P < 0.001). The risk of death increased in patients who underwent reoperation for bleeding (HR 1.89, 95% CI 1.26, 2.85). Conclusion. Reoperation for bleeding following LTx was associated with increased resource utilization and recipient mortality. A lower threshold for intraoperative platelet transfusion and antifibrinolytics, especially in patients with high lab-MELD score, may decrease the incidence of reoperation for bleeding following LTx.
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    ABSTRACT: Background Allogeneic blood products transfusion during liver transplantation (LT) can be associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Data on thromboelastometry (ROTEM)-guided coagulation management with coagulation factor concentrates (CFCs)—fibrinogen concentrate and/or prothrombin complex concentrate (PCC)—are sparse. We aimed to retrospectively evaluate the safety events observed with this approach in our clinic.Study Design and MethodsLT patients from January 2009 to December 2010 (n = 266) were identified by chart review. A ROTEM-based algorithm with CFC guided the hemostatic therapy. Doppler ultrasound was used to evaluate thrombosis in the hepatic artery, portal vein, and hepatic veins. Stroke, myocardial ischemia, pulmonary embolism, and transfusion variables were recorded. Patients receiving CFC were included in the CFC group (n = 156); those not receiving CFC were included in the non-CFC group (n = 110). Safety events were compared between these two groups.ResultsAllogeneic transfusion(s) in the 266 patients was low, with medians of 2 (interquartile range [IQR], 0-5), 0 (IQR 0-0), and 0 (IQR 0-1) units for red blood cells (RBCs), fresh-frozen plasma (FFP), and platelets (PLTs), respectively. Ninety-seven of 266 LTs (36.5%) were performed without RBCs transfusion, 227 (85.3%) without FFP, and 190 (71.4%) without PLTs. There were no significant differences in thrombotic, thromboembolic, and ischemic adverse events occurrence between the CFC group and the non-CFC group (11/156 patients vs. 5/110; p = 0.31).Conclusion In LT, ROTEM-guided treatment with fibrinogen concentrate and/or PCC did not appear to increase the occurrence of thrombosis and ischemic events compared to patients who did not receive these concentrates.
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    ABSTRACT: There is wide variation in the management of coagulation and blood transfusion practice in liver transplantation. The use of blood products intraoperatively is declining and transfusion free transplantations take place ever more frequently. Allogenic blood products have been shown to increase morbidity and mortality. Primary haemostasis, coagulation and fibrinolysis are altered by liver disease. This, combined with intraoperative disturbances of coagulation, increases the risk of bleeding. Meanwhile, the rebalancing of coagulation homeostasis can put patients at risk of hypercoagulability and thrombosis. The application of the principles of patient blood management to transplantation can reduce the risk of transfusion. This includes: preoperative recognition and treatment of anaemia, reduction of perioperative blood loss and the use of restrictive haemoglobin based transfusion triggers. The use of point of care coagulation monitoring using whole blood viscoelastic testing provides a picture of the complete coagulation process by which to guide and direct coagulation management. Pharmacological methods to reduce blood loss include the use of anti-fibrinolytic drugs to reduce fibrinolysis, and rarely, the use of recombinant factor VIIa. Factor concentrates are increasingly used; fibrinogen concentrates to improve clot strength and stability, and prothrombin complex concentrates to improve thrombin generation. Non-pharmacological methods to reduce blood loss include surgical utilisation of the piggyback technique and maintenance of a low central venous pressure. The use of intraoperative cell salvage and normovolaemic haemodilution reduces allogenic blood transfusion. Further research into methods of decreasing blood loss and alternatives to blood transfusion remains necessary to continue to improve outcomes after transplantation.
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