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Transplantation. 1994 May 15;57(9):1328-32.

Liver procurement without in situ portal perfusion. A safe procedure for more flexible multiple organ harvesting.

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Department of Surgery, Cliniques St. Luc, University of Louvain Medical School, Brussels.


The outcome after liver transplantation when grafts were retrieved from the donor by the classical aortic and portal cooling (APC) method was compared with the outcome when exclusively aortic in situ perfusion (AC) was used. Retrospectively, 163 donor hepatectomies performed over a 20-month period were reviewed to analyze overall graft (APC n = 78, AC n = 85) and patient outcome. The global graft and patient survival rates were not significantly lower in the APC group, except for 3-month graft survival (APC 72%, AC 87%; P = 0.015). However, this could be unrelated to the technique. In a subgroup of 140 cases (APC n = 64, AC n = 76), a more detailed analysis was performed. Populations of donors and recipients were similar. The graft injury and the immediate graft function were not significantly different between both groups. A multivariate analysis shows that low donor weight (P = 0.007), donor hypernatremia (P = 0.014), and in situ portal perfusion (P = 0.045) were significant determinants of a higher postoperative peak of glutamic pyruvic transaminase. In summary, in this series, routine human liver procurement using exclusive aortic perfusion seemed to be at least as safe as using a combined aortic and portal perfusion technique. This simplified method may also represent some advantages for combined pancreas and intestinal harvesting in the future.

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