Send to

Choose Destination
Transplantation. 2016 Oct;100(10):2153-9. doi: 10.1097/TP.0000000000001384.

Predicting Outcomes on the Liver Transplant Waiting List in the United States: Accounting for Large Regional Variation in Organ Availability and Priority Allocation Points.

Author information

1 Department of Medicine, Hennepin County Medical Center, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN. 2 Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients, Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation, Minneapolis, MN. 3 Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Department of Medicine, Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA. 4 Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Hepatology, and Nutrition, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN. 5 Department of Surgery, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA. 6 Department of Surgery, Yale University, New Haven, CT. 7 Department of Epidemiology and Community Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN.



The probability of liver transplant and death on the waiting list in the United States varies greatly by donation service area (DSA) due to geographic differences in availability of organs and allocation of priority points, making it difficult for providers to predict likely outcomes after listing. We aimed to develop an online calculator to report outcomes by region and patient characteristics.


Using the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients database, we included all prevalent US adults aged 18 years or older waitlisted for liver transplant, examined on 24 days at least 30 days apart over a 2-year period. Outcomes were determined at intervals of 30 to 365 days. Outcomes are reported by transplant program, DSA, region, and the nation for comparison, and can be shown by allocation or by laboratory model for end-stage liver disease (MELD) score (6-14, 15-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-40), age, and blood type.


Outcomes varied greatly by DSA; for candidates with allocation MELD 25-29, the 25th and 75th percentiles of liver transplant probability were 30% and 67%, respectively, at 90 days. Corresponding percentiles for death or becoming too sick to undergo transplant were 5% and 9%. Outcomes also varied greatly for candidates with and without MELD exception points.


The waitlist outcome calculator highlights ongoing disparities in access to liver transplant and may assist providers in understanding and counseling their patients about likely outcomes on the waiting list.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wolters Kluwer Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center