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Transplantation. 1997 Jul 15;64(1):74-80.

Progression of ventricular wall thickening after liver transplantation for familial amyloidosis.

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Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Massachusetts 02118, USA.



Familial amyloidosis (FAP) is characterized by the progression of neurologic and cardiac impairment ultimately leading to death within 7 to 15 years after the onset of the disease. Liver transplantation represents the only definitive therapy for this disease and has been performed since 1990.


To determine the effect of liver transplantation on disease progression, electrocardiography and Doppler echocardiography were performed and blindly analyzed on 11 patients with FAP who were followed 0.8 to 8.6 years before liver transplantation and 0.8 to 4.1 years after liver transplantation. RESULTS; After liver transplantation, five patients showed progression of left ventricular wall thickening with increased left ventricular mass, and three of these five showed a reduction in electrocardiographic voltage despite abolition of the mutant protein from the serum. Of the five patients showing progressive wall thickening, four had the transthyretin variant Glu 42 Gly and one patient had the Ala 36 Pro variant; none of the remaining six patients, all of whom possessed the Val 30 Met variant, showed echocardiographic changes. Although 9 of the 11 patients have shown symptomatic improvement in neurologic symptoms, 1 patient has developed heart failure and a second patient has suffered a sudden cardiac death.


After liver transplantation, patients with FAP should have regular clinical evaluations including electrocardiographic and echocardiographic examinations to look for continued deterioration in heart structure or function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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