Donor selection limits use of living-related liver transplantation



The purpose of this investigation was to assess the applicability of living-related liver transplantation in an established regional transplant program by determining the frequency of acceptable living donors from an unselected population of pediatric transplant candidates and identify specific factors limiting application of this technique. During the period May 1992 to May 1994, all children accepted as transplant candidates at the University of California-San Francisco were evaluated for potential living-related liver transplantation. Indications for transplantation and patient demographics represented the spectrum anticipated at a regional center. Donor evaluation was performed using a three-phase evaluation process we have previously reported. Retrospective analysis identified 75 potential donors for 38 pediatric candidates (age range, 17 days to 14.5 years; mean, 5.1 years). Twenty-three percent of potential donors declined evaluation. Of the 75 potential donors, only 10 (13%) were found to be acceptable for donation. The leading causes for donor declination were significant medical history (23%), ABO blood group incompatibility (23%), and psychosocial history (20%). Of the 38 recipient candidates, 9 (23%) were offered living-donor transplantation. Five patients have received living-donor transplantation, and 4 patients await the procedure when medical indications exist. Seventy-seven percent of recipient candidates received or are awaiting cadaveric transplantation. These results suggest that current donor criteria markedly limit the application of living-related liver transplantation. (HEPATOLOGY 1995; 22:1122–1126.).