Joint Impact of Donor and Recipient Parameters on the Outcome of Liver Transplantation in Germany

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The shortage of donor organs in Germany has led to the use of organs from donors with extended donor criteria (EDC). EDC have been defined on the basis of expert opinions, but their clinical relevance is controversial. This may cause loss of organs otherwise available for transplantation. We evaluated the impact of donor and recipient factors in liver transplants on patient and graft survival in a nationwide multicenter analysis, with special focus on EDC and donor risk index.


A database was created from data on livers donated and transplanted in Germany between 2006 and 2008 as provided by Deutsche Stiftung Organtransplantation and BQS Institute. Cox regression (significance level 5%, risk ratio [95% confidence interval]) was used for calculating the impact on patient survival (n=2095) and on graft survival (n=2175).


Patient and graft survival were significantly affected only by donor age (1.012 and 1.011/year), recipient age (1.019 and 1.014/year), creatinine (1.248 and 1.205/mg/dL), bilirubin (1.022 and 1.023/mg/dL), and high urgency status (1.783 and 1.809). Inferior organ quality resulted in lower graft survival (1.243) and donor history of smoking in lower patient survival (1.249).


Multiple Cox regression revealed no significant impact of EDC or donor risk index on patient and graft survival except for donor age after donor selection at recovery. Among recipient variables, only age, creatinine and bilirubin, and high urgency status were associated with poorer outcome.

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