With increased demand for liver transplantation, outcomes of older recipients have been subjected to greater scrutiny.
Previous studies have demonstrated poorer survival outcomes.
Dr Timothy Cross and colleagues from the United Kingdom compared survival and long-term outcomes between patients in 2 age groups who underwent liver transplantation.
The team evaluated 77 patients aged over 65 years in Group 1 who underwent transplantation between 1988 and 2003.
These were compared with 137 recipients aged between 60 and 64 years in Group 2.
|Survival at 5 years was 80% in those over 60 years vs 78% in controls|
Group 3 included 202 time-matched control patients with chronic liver disease aged between 18-59 years.
The team found that patient survival at 30-days for Groups 1, 2, and 3 were 99%, 94%, and 94%, respectively.
At 1-year, survival in the 3 groups was 82%, 86%, and 83%, for Groups 1, 2, and 3, respectively.
The researchers observed that at 5-years, patient survival was comparable at 73%, 80%, and 78% in Groups 1, 2, and 3, respectively.
The team found that episodes of acute cellular rejection were fewer in the older cohorts.
However, there was no significant difference identified in the numbers of patients in each group who experienced acute cellular rejection.
The team observed a similar but nonsignificant trend for rates of chronic rejection among the groups.
Dr Cross' team concluded, "These data suggest that survival of patients over 60 and 65 years undergoing liver transplantation is satisfactory, at least in the first 5-years posttransplantation."
"In addition, patients over 65 years experience less rejection, with good graft survival."
"Thus, liver transplantation should not be denied to patients over 65 years on the basis of age alone, once a comprehensive screen for comorbidity has been undertaken."