BACKGROUND - There are only limited data on post-transplant ascites unrelated to small-sized grafts in living donor liver transplantation (LDLT).
METHODS - The subjects were 59 adult patients who had received right lobe LDLT with a graft weight-to-recipient weight ratio (GRWR)>0.8%. Patients were divided into either Group 1 (n=14, massive ascites, defined as the production of ascitic fluid>1000 mL/d that lasted longer than 14 d after LDLT) or Group 2 (n=45, no development of massive ascites). Patients were followed for a median period of 3.0 yr (range, 0.5-7.5 yr).
RESULTS - Group 1 had both higher Model for End-Stage Liver Disease score and Child-Pugh score than Group 2. Portal venous flow volume just after reperfusion was significantly greater in Group 1 than Group 2 (307.8±268.8 vs. 176.2±75.0 mL/min/100 g graft weight, respectively; p<0.05). Post-transplant infectious complications including ascites infection developed more frequently within the first post-transplant month in Group 1. Massive ascites was significantly associated with early graft loss (p<0.05).
CONCLUSION - Post-transplant massive ascites associated with portal over-perfusion into the graft liver can develop in patients with a GRWR over 0.8%. Recipients with post-transplant massive ascites require careful management to prevent infection.
© 2009 John Wiley & Sons A/S.