Liver fluke-infested graft used for living-donor liver transplantation: case report and review of the literature

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Clonorchiasis is a cholangiopathy caused by foodborne trematode parasites, also known as liver flukes. Clonorchiasis is endemic in a wide geographical area extending from Eastern Europe to Southeast Asia. Infested hosts may remain asymptomatic for decades and consequently their liver can become available as a graft. To date, 20 liver transplantations with liver fluke-infested grafts have been reported in the literature. All of them occurred in Asian countries. We, here, report the first case to our knowledge in the Western world of living-donor liver transplantation (LDLT) with an Opisthorchis felineus-infested graft, and present a review of the literature. A 6-month-old girl with decompensated secondary biliary cirrhosis underwent an LDLT with a left lateral graft infested with O. felineus. After prompt diagnosis and adequate therapy, both donor and recipient had an uneventful postoperative course and long-term follow-up. Liver grafts infested with liver flukes do not pose a contraindication to liver donation from deceased or living donors, provided that a correct diagnosis and treatment are performed in a timely fashion.

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