Abdominal normothermic regional perfusion (aNRP) for donation after circulatory death is an emerging organ preservation technique that might lead to increased organ utilization per donor by facilitating viability testing, improving transplant outcome by early reversal of ischemia, and decreasing the risk of unintentional surgical damage. The aim of the current review is to evaluate the recent literature on the added value of aNRP when compared to local standard perfusion technique.
The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses guideline for systematic reviews was used, and relevant literature databases were searched. Primary outcomes were organ utilization rate and patient and graft survival after 1 year. Secondary outcomes included delayed graft function, primary nonfunction, serum creatinine, and biliary complications.
A total of 24 articles were included in this review. The technique is unanimously reported to be feasible and safe, but the available studies are characterized by considerable heterogeneity and bias.
Uniform reported outcome measures are needed to draw more definitive conclusions on transplant outcomes and organ utilization. A randomized controlled trial comparing aNRP with standard procurement technique in donation after circulatory death donors would be needed to show the added value of the procedure and determine its place among modern preservation techniques.