Transthyretin amyloidosis is today an accepted indication for orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT). For several mutations progression of the cardiomyopathy has been observed after OLT. The aim of this study was to assess the course of cardiac involvement in Swedish familial amyloidotic polyneuropathy (FAP), Portuguese type, after OLT. By comparison of the echocardiographic findings before OLT with those obtained after, the course of the heart involvement was followed.Methods.
Twenty-three patients, who had undergone OLT and were examined with echocardiography 1–12 months before OLT, were available for the study. Twenty-one patients were examined 12–27 months after OLT, and 12 were re-examined 52–71 months after OLT. Two-dimensional and M-mode echocardiography were performed in accordance with the standards of the American Society of Echocardiography.Results.
A significantly increased septal and left ventricular posterior wall thickness and a significantly increased left atrial dimension was observed at the post-OLT examinations, indicating a progression of the amyloid heart disease. This increase of the cardiac involvement was neither correlated to waiting time for OLT or to pre-operative signs of cardiomyopathy.Conclusions.
Even though the production of the amyloidogenic-mutated transthyretin is stopped by OLT, the cardiomyopathy may progress after the operation even for the Portuguese type of FAP. The increase of the septal and left ventricular posterior wall thickness after OLT is not restricted to patients with signs of left ventricular hypertrophy before the transplantation. The findings have important implications for the follow-up of FAP patients after OLT.