In the past 15 years, since the first successful long-term survival after small bowel transplantation, there has been a dramatic improvement in outcomes. Small bowel transplantation is now the best option for patients with intestinal failure with life-threatening complications. During this past year a consensus conference agreed on a set of standard indications for small bowel transplantation heralding a major milestone for this field. Other major developments include the demonstration of the need for early referral, the introduction of novel immunotherapy, better control of cytomegaly virus and Epstein-Barr virus, and recognition of the unacceptably high mortality rate for combined liver and small bowel transplantation candidates awaiting transplantation.
The Dumont-UCLA Transplant Center, Department of Surgery, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Los Angeles, California, USA.
Correspondence to Douglas G. Farmer, MD, Director Intestinal Transplant Program, Dumont-UCLA Transplant Center, Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, 77–120 CHS, Box 957054, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA; e-mail: DGFarmer@mednet.ucla.edu