Liver and Intestine Transplantation in the United States, 1997–2006


* Corresponding author: Richard Freeman,


Liver transplantation in 2006 generally resembled previous years, with fewer candidates waiting for deceased donor liver transplants (DDLT), continuing a trend initiated with the implementation of the model for end-stage liver disease (MELD). Candidate age distribution continued to skew toward older ages with fewer children listed in 2006 than in any prior year. Total transplants increased due to more DDLT with slightly fewer living donor liver transplants (LDLT). Waiting list deaths and time to transplant continued to improve. In 2006, there also were fewer DDLT for patients with MELD <15, fewer pediatric Status 1A/B transplants and more transplants from donation after cardiac death (DCD) donors. Adjusted patient and graft survival rates were similar for LDLT and DDLT. This article also contains in-depth analyses of transplantation for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Recipients with HCC had lower adjusted 3-year posttransplant survival than recipients without HCC. HCC recipients who received pretransplant ablative treatments had superior adjusted 3-year posttransplant survival compared to HCC recipients who did not. Intestinal transplantation continued to slowly increase with the largest number of candidates on the waiting list since 1997. Survival rates have increased over time. Small children waiting for intestine grafts continue to have the highest waiting list mortality.