SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Keywords:

  • eosinophilic colitis;
  • eosinophilic gastrointestinal disorder;
  • pediatric liver transplantation;
  • tacrolimus;
  • eosinophilia;
  • Epstein–Barr virus

Abstract:  Tacrolimus-based immunosuppression in pediatric liver transplant recipients is known to be associated with EGID. Our goal was to determine the incidence, risk factors, and characteristics of EGID in our pediatric liver transplantation program. This study was a retrospective analysis of 38 pediatric liver transplant recipients. Rectal mucosal biopsy was performed to evaluate for gastrointestinal PTLD and eosinophilic colitis. There were 14 patients (37%) who were diagnosed with eosinophilic colitis. The mean age at transplantation was 10.8 ± 1.8 months. Those with eosinophilic colitis had a higher incidence of peripheral eosinophilia (p = 0.003) during the first two months following transplantation and had a higher EBV infection rate. Symptoms, such as diarrhea, hematochezia, and abdominal pain, became apparent after an average of three months; diagnoses were made at 6.9 ± 2.0 months after transplantation. There were eight patients (57%) with elevated food-specific IgE levels. With food restriction treatment, the symptoms of patients improved. EGID should be considered when clinical symptoms are present, because symptoms of this disorder are similar to those of gastrointestinal PTLD. It should also be considered when peripheral eosinophila is detected or when EBV seroconversion develops during the first two months following transplantation.