Living donor liver transplantation for neonatal fulminant hepatitis due to herpes simplex virus infection

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Abstract

Although rare, ALF caused by disseminated HSV infection is associated with high mortality in the neonatal population. This condition is often diagnosed relatively late due to the absence of specific signs. We present a case involving a neonate with ALF submitted to living donor liver transplantation without a prior diagnosis. The patient had no skin or mucosal lesions, and IgM serology was negative for HSV-1 and HSV-2. Immunohistochemical staining of the liver explant was positive for herpes virus infection, and the patient subsequently received antiviral drug treatment, with a good outcome. Due to organ shortages and the rarity of the aforementioned condition, LT has seldom been reported for the treatment of ALF caused by herpes virus infection; however, LT may be the only option for neonates with fulminant hepatitis. The use of living donors in an urgent scenario is well established in Eastern countries and safely applicable for pediatric patients with ALF.

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