You are here

Age irrelevant to liver transplant success

21st August 2007

Older patients are no more likely to die following a liver transplant than their younger peers, according to a new report.

Scientists from the University of California in Los Angeles reviewed the records of patients who received their first liver transplant between 1988 and 2005, recording their survival time until death, the last known follow-up date or re-transplantation.

The team found there was no statistically significant difference in the survival rate for patients aged 70 or over compared to younger participants with similar characteristics.

Lead researcher Dr Gerald Lipshutz said: "In conclusion, biological and physiological variables may play a more important role than advanced age in predicting poor survival after liver transplantation.

"Measures of physiological age and risk of complications should be used in the evaluation process of elderly transplant candidates. Age by itself should not be used to limit liver transplantation."

The longest-surviving patient was 88 years old 15 years after transplantation.