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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 2329-0358

Prevalence, Severity, and Prognostic Effect of Hepatopulmonary Syndrome in Liver Transplant Candidates

Abdullah Al-Harbi, Khalid Abdullah, Abdulmajeed Al-Abdulkareem, Ali Alghamdi, Hamdan Al-Jahdali

Department of Medicine, Pulmonary Division, King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, King Abdulaziz Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Ann Transplant 2016; 21:180-184

DOI: 10.12659/AOT.896095

Available online: 2016-03-29

Published: 2016-03-29


BACKGROUND: Hepatopulmonary syndrome (HPS) is commonly encountered in the setting of end-stage liver disease (ESLD). Past studies have reported conflicting results in terms of demonstrating an association between HPS and mortality. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of HPS in patients with ESLD referred for assessment of transplantation suitability. In addition, we investigated survival rates in the setting of HPS, with and without liver transplantation.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: The medical records of 524 consecutive patients with ESLD evaluated for potential liver transplantation were retrospectively reviewed. HPS was defined by a reduced partial pressure of oxygen or an elevated alveolar-arterial oxygen gradient and the presence of intrapulmonary vascular dilatation on contrast-enhanced echocardiography.
RESULTS: In total, 57 subjects (12%) fulfilled the diagnostic criteria of HPS; 88% of these had mild to moderate HPS. For patients with HPS, the overall survival rates at 1 and 3 years were 95% and 92%, respectively. Liver transplants were received by 245 patients (53%), 26 of whom had HPS. For transplant recipients with HPS, the overall survival rates at 1 and 3 years were 96% and 91%, respectively, compared to 85% and 80% in subjects without HPS. Post-transplantation survival in patients with and without HPS did not differ significantly (HR=0.489, 95% CI: 0.153–1.564; p=0.228).
CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrated a high prevalence of IPVD and HPS among patients who were potential candidates for liver transplantation. HPS was mild to moderate in the majority of those affected and had no significant effect on overall survival.

Keywords: End stage liver disease, hepatopulmonary syndrome, Liver Transplantation