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J Clin Gastroenterol. 2004 Mar;38(3):292-5.

Liver transplantation for disulfiram-induced fulminant hepatic failure.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Section of Digestive and Liver Diseases, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA.


Disulfiram has been used as a popular adjunct in programs for alcohol rehabilitation. However, in rare cases, disulfiram has been reported to cause fulminant hepatitis. Disulfiram use and its associated complications in adolescents have received minimal attention in the literature. We report the first pediatric case of successful orthotopic liver transplantation for disulfiram-induced fulminant hepatic failure in a 16-year-old girl, who developed an idiosyncratic reaction associated with short-term, low-dose disulfiram use, as evidenced by her liver biopsy and explanted liver. This case report indicates that a high index of suspicion, and aggressive therapeutic interventions are necessary to recognize and manage disulfiram-induced fulminant hepatic failure in adolescents. Success of this case suggests that transplant centers should consider liver transplantation of an adolescent alcoholic patient with fulminant hepatic failure due to non-alcohol-related causes such as disulfiram. Orthotopic liver transplantation should be considered early in the management of disulfiram-induced fulminant hepatic failure.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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