Impact of Dialysis and Older Age on Survival after Liver Transplantation

Department of Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States
American Journal of Transplantation (Impact Factor: 5.68). 10/2006; 6(9):2183-90. DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-6143.2006.01454.x
Source: PubMed


Because creatinine is heavily weighed in the MELD (model for end-stage liver disease) score, we sought to determine the impact of MELD-based organ allocation on outcomes after transplantation in the pre- and post-MELD eras, focusing on recipients over age 65 on dialysis prior to transplant. A total of 20 196 patients from the UNOS database were analyzed. Comparing the pre-MELD to MELD era, there was a 41% increase in patients on dialysis (p<0.0001), and a 117% increase in combined liver/kidney transplants (p<0.0001). In the pre-MELD era, 1-year patient survival in recipients greater and less than age 65 on dialysis who received liver transplant alone was 56.8% and 76.4%, respectively (p=0.13). In the MELD era these rates were 50.7% and 77.8% (p=0.04). In the pre-MELD era, 1-year patient survival in recipients greater and less than age 65 on dialysis who underwent combined liver/kidney transplantation was 25.0% and 83.2%, respectively (p=0.0002). In the MELD era, these rates were 67.0% and 82.5% (p=0.18). In conclusion, a greater proportion of patients in the MELD era are on dialysis prior to transplant, and more receive combined liver/kidney transplants compared with the pre-MELD era. Candidates over age 65 who are on dialysis at the time of transplant have decreased survival after isolated liver transplantation.

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