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Long-term Outcomes of Isolated Liver Transplantation for Short Bowel Syndrome and Intestinal Failure–associated Liver Disease

Taha, A.M.I.*; Sharif, K.*; Johnson, T.; Clarke, S.; Murphy, M.S.; Gupte, G.L.*

Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition: April 2012 - Volume 54 - Issue 4 - p 547–551
doi: 10.1097/MPG.0b013e31823f42e7
Original Articles: Hepatology and Nutrition

Background and Aim: A select group of children with short bowel syndrome (SBS) and intestinal failure–associated liver disease (IFALD) fulfill the criteria for isolated liver transplantation (iLTx). Long-term results in this group of patients have not been reported.

Methods: A retrospective study of the medical records of 8 survivors of 14 children who underwent iLTx for SBS and IFALD from 1998 to 2005, managed by a multidisciplinary intestinal rehabilitation team at our institution.

Results: Median follow-up is 107.5 months (range 89–153 months). Five of 8 children were weaned from parenteral nutrition (PN) to enteral nutrition (EN) in a median of 10 months after iLTx (range 3–32 months). Three of 5 children were subsequently weaned from EN to full oral feeding in 13, 24, and 53 months after stopping PN, whereas the remaining 2 are still receiving EN 118 and 74 months after stopping PN. These 5 children maintain their weight median z scores with a median increase of 1.59 (range 1.24–1.79) compared with the pretransplant z score, whereas the height z scores show fluctuations through the years with a median change of 0.12 (range −0.29 to 0.36). The other 3 of 8 children developed progressive intestinal failure; 2 underwent isolated small bowel transplantation 112 and 84 months after iLTx and the third is receiving PN.

Conclusions: Children with SBS and IFALD who have the potential for adaptation in the residual bowel can undergo iLTx, but it is a treatment option to be exercised with extreme caution. These children need close follow-up with an experienced multidisciplinary team to monitor nutritional outcomes and may need consideration for transplant or nontransplant surgery in the long term.

*Liver Unit (including small bowel transplantation)

Department of Dietetics

Department of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Birmingham Children's Hospital, Steelhouse Lane, Birmingham, UK.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Dr Girish Gupte, Consultant Paediatric Hepatologist, Liver Unit (including small bowel transplantation), Birmingham Children's Hospital, Steelhouse Lane, Birmingham B4 6NH, UK (e-mail:

Received 11 June, 2011

Accepted 19 October, 2011

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Copyright 2012 by ESPGHAN and NASPGHAN