Author(s): McCaughan G, Angus P, Bowden S, Shaw T, Breschkin A,
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Abstract Retransplantation for hepatitis B-related liver allograft failure is rarely successful. Recurrence of infection is almost universal, and the second allograft is invariably lost more rapidly than the first. In a recent multicenter study, only 1 of 20 hepatitis B virus (HBV)-positive patients who underwent liver retransplantation survived beyond 6 months. This report describes the long-term effect of antiviral therapy in a 56-year-old man who was retransplanted for HBV-related allograft loss 14 months after his initial liver transplant. He was treated after the second transplant with intravenous daily ganciclovir. After 10 months of this therapy HBV recurrence was detected. After a change to oral famciclovir therapy, there was a decrease in serum HBV DNA and amino-transferase levels and an improvement in the patient's clinical condition. Famiciclovir therapy has now been continued for 26 months, and the patient remains well 3 years after his second transplant, despite persistent HBV infection and progression to cirrhosis. These observations indicate that the use of long-term antiviral therapy offers promise for improving outcomes in patients who undergo retransplantation after HBV-related liver allograft failure.
This article was published in Liver Transpl Surg
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Cellular Immunology