Donor Risk Index and MELD Interactions in Predicting Long-Term Graft Survival: A Single-Centre Experience

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Feng et al. described the donor risk index (DRI) in North American liver transplant recipients. We evaluated the effect of the DRI and model for end-stage liver disease (MELD) score on liver transplant recipients from a single center in the United Kingdom.


Prospectively, collected data of all patients transplanted at our center between January 1995 and December 2005 were included in the analysis (n=1090). Outcomes evaluated included patient-censored and death-censored graft survival. Outcomes of liver transplantation from “high” and “low” DRI groups (≥1.8 and <1.8, respectively) on patients categorized into low (<15), intermediate (15-30), and high (>30) MELD categories were analyzed.


MELD at transplant was the only significant predictor of patient survival. MELD at transplant and DRI more than 1.7 were associated with a poorer graft survival (P=0.03). There was a trend toward poorer graft survival in high DRI grafts transplanted in low and “intermediate” MELD categories (P=0.47 and 0.006, respectively). However, in the high MELD category, there was a similar graft survival for both high and low DRI grafts.


Patients with low and intermediate MELDs at transplantation may be better served by a low DRI graft, whereas patients with high MELD may not be compromised by receiving a high DRI graft.

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