The effectiveness of liver transplantation to cure numerous diseases, alleviate suffering, and improve patient survival has led to an ever increasing demand. Improvements in preoperative management, surgical technique, and postoperative care have allowed increasingly complicated and high-risk patients to be safely transplanted. As a result, many patients are safely transplanted in the modern era that would have been considered untransplantable in times gone by. Despite this, more gains are possible as the science behind transplantation is increasingly understood. Normothermic machine perfusion of liver grafts builds on these gains further by increasing the safe use of grafts with suboptimal features, through objective assessment of both hepatocyte and cholangiocyte function. This technology can minimize cold ischemia, but prolong total preservation time, with particular benefits for suboptimal grafts and surgically challenging recipients. In addition to more physiological and favorable preservation conditions for grafts with risk factors for poor outcome, the extended preservation time benefits operative logistics by allowing a careful explant and complicated vascular reconstruction when presented with challenging surgical scenarios. This technology represents a significant advancement in graft preservation techniques and the transplant community must continue to incorporate this technology to ensure the benefits of liver transplant are maximized.
Bibliographical noteCopyright © 2022 Hann, Nutu, Clarke, Patel, Sneiders, Oo, Hartog and Perera.
- Cold Ischemia/adverse effects
- Liver Transplantation/methods
- Organ Preservation/methods