Author(s): Fouad TR, AbdelRazek WM, Burak KW, Bain VG, Lee SS
BACKGROUND: Orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) stresses the cardiovascular system, and cardiac complications after OLT are common.
METHODS: Hundred ninety-seven patients (>or=40 years) who had OLT from 2002 to 2007 were reviewed to identify predictors of cardiac complications within 6 months after transplantation.
RESULTS: Median age was 56 years (40-75 years); 69% men. Reasons for OLT were hepatitis C virus (HCV) 45.5%, alcohol 22%, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) 8%, primary biliary cirrhosis 10%, and others 14.5%. Eighty-two patients suffered one or more cardiac complications within 6 months after OLT (pulmonary edema=61 [overt heart failure=7], arrhythmia=13, pulmonary hypertension=7, pericardial effusion=2, and right atrial thrombus=1). Cardiac causes were the leading cause of death (n=5; 23.8% of all mortality). By multivariate analysis, after adjusting for age and sex, independent predictors were adverse intraoperative cardiovascular events (adjusted odds ratio; 95% confidence interval: 5.89, 1.82-19.14), history of cardiac disease (2.42, 0.89-6.6), and i-MELD (integrated model for end-stage liver disease) score (1.08, 1.02-1.14), whereas adverse intraoperative cardiovascular events (5.73, 1.96-16.78) and i-MELD (1.07, 1.01-1.13) predicted pulmonary edema. None of the following variables predicted complications: age, sex, OLT indication, body mass index, blood pressure, alcohol and smoking history, pre-OLT investigations (chest X-ray, electrocardiogram, echocardiography, coronary angiography, pulmonary arterial pressure, and 2-methoxy isobutyl isonitrile scan), immunosuppressive treatment, or intraoperative variables (transfusion amount, cadaveric vs. living graft or cold ischemia and rewarming times).
CONCLUSIONS: Cardiac complications after OLT are common and were the leading cause of death after surgery. Adverse intraoperative cardiovascular events, previous cardiac disease, and advanced liver disease as quantified by i-MELD score predicted postoperative cardiac complications.Journal of Anesthesia & Clinical Research