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Evaluation of early vs standard liver transplant for alcohol-associated liver disease

JAMA Nov 17, 2021

Herrick-Reynolds KM, Punchhi G, Greenberg RS, et al. - Traditionally, 6 months of alcohol abstinence is recommended for liver transplantation (LT) for alcohol-associated liver disease (ALD). In view of the observations of decreased mortality for decompensated ALD in correlation with early LT before 6 months of abstinence, researchers sought to determine if 6 months of alcohol abstinence is associated with poor posttransplant outcomes in patients with ALD.

  • In this cohort study, researchers analyzed data from 163 patients with ALD who underwent their first LT at a single academic referral center.

  • Select transplant candidates with less than 6 months of alcohol abstinence received early liver transplant.

  • No significant difference in 1-year patient survival, allograft survival, or relapse-free survival was recorded between patients with less than 6 months of abstinence vs those with more than 6 months of abstinence.

  • Overall findings did not reveal superior survival outcomes in correlation with adherence to the 6-month abstinence rule, indicating that cases with alcohol-associated liver disease with less than 6 months of abstinence should not be categorically refrained from liver transplant.

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