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Transpl Int. 2000;13 Suppl 1:S249-52.

A proposal for scoring marginal liver grafts.

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Department of Surgery, Hospital Reina Sofía, Cordoba, Spain.


The aim of this study is to assess the effect of accumulation of marginal liver graft criteria on the immediate outcome of liver transplantation (LT). The last 325 consecutive LT performed in 293 patients were analyzed retrospectively with respect to donor acceptance criteria. A marginal liver score was elaborated on the basis of the following features: donor > 60 years, ICU stay > 4 days, cold ischemia times > 13 h, hypotensive episodes < 60 mmHg > 1 h, bilirubin > 2.0 mg/dl, ALT > 170 U/l, and AST > 140 U/l were scored with the value 1. The use of dopamine doses > 10 microg/kg per min and peak serum sodium > 155 mEq/l were labeled with value 2. The cut-off point at 6 months after LT revealed 42 deaths (14%), with 65 graft losses (20%) and 32 (9%) retransplants. Recipient survival was not affected by the combined effect of marginal criteria. However, recipients transplanted with marginal livers with score 3 or more showed a decrease in graft survival (log-rank 6.21; P = 0.045) and an increase in delayed non-function rate (10 out of 33 vs 4 out of 156; P = 0.03). The use of marginal liver donors with more than three risk factors must be carefully reviewed or refused because of the cumulative dysfunction of these grafts.

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