The number of candidates for liver transplantation has increased in the recent years.
However, the pool of cadaveric donor organs has remained constant and the waiting time progressively increases.
Dr Jérôme Dumortier and colleagues from France started a program of adult-to-adult living-donor liver transplantation in 1998.
The team of doctors compared the outcome of all patients put on the waiting list since 1998.
|1-year survival was 88% in the living donor group|
Between 1998 and 2005, 505 patients were put on the waiting list at the researchers' center.
Living donor liver transplantation was considered in 57 cases.
At the time of evaluation, liver transplantation was performed in 377 patients.
The doctors reported that 89 patients died while on waiting list.
On an intention-to-treat basis, the team found that the 1-year survival rate from the time of listing was 88% in the living donor group.
The team noted that the 1-year survival rate from the time of listing was 76% in the cadaveric donor group.
The doctors observed that the 1-year survival after liver transplantation was similar.
Dr Dumortier's team concludes, “Our living donor liver transplantation program was able to improve the access to liver transplantation by reducing waiting time and the number of deaths on waiting list.”
We were able to achieve this despite the fact that these patients were more critically ill.”