Improved Survival After Live Donor Adult Liver Transplantation (LDALT) Using Right Lobe Grafts: Program Experience and Lessons Learned



We present our program experience with 85 live donor adult liver transplantation (LDALT) procedures using right lobe grafts with five simultaneous live donor kidney transplants using different donors performed over a 6-year period. After an ‘early’ 2-year experience of 25 LDALT procedures, program improvements in donor and recipient selection, preoperative imaging, donor and recipient surgical technique and immunosuppressive management significantly reduced operative mortality (16% vs. 3.3%, p = 0.038) and improved patient and graft 1-year survival in recipients during our ‘later’ experience with the next 60 cases (January 2001 and March 2005; patient survival: early 70.8% vs. later 92.7%, p = 0.028; graft survival: Early 64% vs. later 91.1%, p = 0.019, respectively). Overall patient and graft survival were 82% and 80%. There was a trend for less postoperative complications (major and minor) with program experience (early 88% vs. later 66.7%; p = 0.054) but overall morbidity remained at 73.8%. Biliary complications (cholangitis, disruption, leak or stricture) were not influenced by program experience (early 32% vs. later 38%). Liver volume adjusted to 100% of standard liver volume (SLV) within 1 month post-transplant. Despite a high rate of morbidity after LDALT, excellent patient and graft survival can be achieved with program experience.