Outcomes of liver transplantation for patients with alagille syndrome: The studies of pediatric liver transplantation experience

Binita M. Kamath*, Wanrong Yin, Heather Miller, Ravinder Anand, Elizabeth B. Rand, Estella Alonso, John Bucuvalas

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


Alagille syndrome (ALGS) is a multisystem disorder that manifests as childhood cholestasis. Reports of liver transplantation (LT) for patients with ALGS have come largely from single centers, which have reported survival rates of 57% to 79%. The aim of this study was to determine LT outcomes for patients with ALGS. We performed a retrospective analysis of the Studies of Pediatric Liver Transplantation database, which contains information about 3153 pediatric LT recipients. Data were available for 91 patients with ALGS and for 236 age-matched patients with biliary atresia (BA). The frequency of complex cardiac anomalies was lower in the LT group with ALGS versus published ALGS series (5% versus 13%). The pretransplant glomerular filtration rate (GFR) was <90 mL/minute/1.73 m2 in 18% of the LT patients with ALGS and in 5% of the LT patients with BA (P < 0.001). The height deficit at listing was worse for the ALGS patients (66%) versus the BA patients (22%). The 1-year patient survival rates were 87% for the ALGS patients and 96% for the BA patients (P = 0.002). The deaths in the ALGS group mostly occurred within the first 30 days. No pretransplant factors associated with death were identified in the ALGS group. A survival analysis revealed that biliary (P = 0.02), vascular (P < 0.001), central nervous system (CNS; P < 0.001), and renal complications (P < 0.001) after LT were associated with death in the ALGS group. Renal insufficiency in the ALGS patients worsened after LT, and at 1 year, GFR was <90 mL/minute/1.73 m2 in 22% of the LT patients with ALGS but in only 8% of the patients with BA (P = 0.0014). More LT pediatric patients with ALGS either were currently receiving special education (50% versus 30% for BA patients, P = 0.02) or had received special education in the past (60% versus 36%, P = 0.01). Vascular, CNS, and renal complications were increased in the ALGS patients after LT, and this reflected multisystem involvement. Although the 1-year survival rate was modestly lower for the ALGS patients versus the BA patients, the clustering of deaths within the first 30 days is notable and warrants increased vigilance and further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)940-948
Number of pages9
JournalLiver Transplantation
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Hepatology
  • Transplantation


Dive into the research topics of 'Outcomes of liver transplantation for patients with alagille syndrome: The studies of pediatric liver transplantation experience'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this