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Intravascular volume replacement therapy is an important issue in the perioperative management of liver transplantation. There is paucity of data on the safety of hydroxyethyl starch (HES) in patients undergoing liver transplantation. We evaluated the safety of a new HES 130/0.4 in the perioperative management of liver transplantation, with a special emphasis on renal function.Forty patients undergoing living donor liver transplantation were prospectively randomized into two groups. Patients in the ALB group (n = 20) received 5% human albumin. Patients in the HES group (n = 20) received third generation HES (6% HES 130/0.4). Total colloid administration was limited to 50 mL · kg−1 · d−1. The volume was given to maintain pulmonary artery occlusion pressure or central venous pressure between 5 and 7 mm Hg. If additional fluids were required, balanced crystalloid solution was used. Anesthetic and surgical techniques were standardized. Serum creatinine and cystatin C plasma levels were measured from arterial blood samples after induction of anesthesia, at the end of surgery, and on the first 4 postoperative days.All 40 enrolled patients completed the study. Demographic and intraoperative variables were comparable in both groups. Postoperatively, the mean ± sd volume was 6229 ± 1140 mL and 4636 ± 1153 mL in HES and ALB groups, respectively (P = 0.003). There was significantly larger net cumulative fluid balance in the ALB group 1100 ± 900 mL compared with the HES group 3047 ± 2000 mL, P = 0.029. Serum creatinine, creatinine clearance, and cystatin C plasma levels showed no significant differences between the two groups. One patient in each group developed acute renal failure requiring renal replacement therapy.The use of HES 130/0.4 as an alternative to human albumin resulted in equivalent renal outcome after liver transplantation.