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J Pediatr Surg. 1990 Oct;25(10):1076-80; discussion 1081.

Biliary atresia registry, 1976 to 1989.

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Department of Surgery, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver 80262.


The Registry provides information about 904 children with biliary atresia from more than 100 institutions. There was a 1.4 to 1 female predominance; racial distribution was 62% caucasian, 20% black, 11% Hispanic, 4.2% asian, and 1.5% American Indian. Eight hundred sixteen (90%) underwent corrective surgery (median age at operation, 69 days). Intraoperatively, 70% had totally obliterated extrahepatic bile ducts, 22% had patency of the gallbladder and distal common duct, whereas only 8% had "correctable" biliary atresia (proximal duct patency). A variety of reconstructions were used, but the majority of patients had a Roux-en-Y portoenterostomy with or without exteriorization. Follow-up was available for 670 children (74%) with average length of follow-up of 5 years (range, 1 to 16 years). Five-year actuarial survival was 48% following Kasai's operation, but was less than 10% (at 3 years) if no operative correction was done. Survival was unaffected by sex, type of reconstruction, or cholangitis. Predictors of a bad outcome were (1) caucasian race; (2) operative age greater than 60 days; (3) presence of cirrhosis at initial biopsy; (4) totally nonpatent extrahepatic ducts; (5) absent ducts at the level of transection in the liver hilus; and (6) subsequent development of varices or ascites. Identification of factors predictive of the ultimate outcome provide a basis for either continued efforts with management of Kasai's operation or for early referral for liver transplantation.

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