Liver transplantation in cryptogenic cirrhosis: Outcome comparisons between NASH, alcoholic, and AIH cirrhosis

Paul Joseph Thuluvath, Steven Hanish, Yulia Savva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Background The outcomes of liver transplantation (LT) in patients with cryptogenic cirrhosis (CC) have not been adequately examined except for small case series. We believe that patients currently listed as CC have truly cryptogenic liver disease and may have different post-LT outcomes compared with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Methods We compared the post-LT outcomes of adults with CC (n = 3241) and compared them with cirrhosis from NASH (n = 4089), alcoholic cirrhosis (AC) (n = 7837), and autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) (n = 1435) using the United Network for Organ Sharing database from 2002 to 2016. We excluded those who had multiorgan transplantation and hepatocellular carcinoma. In addition to the well-known predictors of liver transplant outcomes, we analyzed the impact of Karnofsky Performance Status score at LT on immediate and late outcomes. Results There were significant differences in clinical characteristics between the groups. Despite these differences in clinical characteristics and risk factors, CC had similar graft and patient survival to NASH, AC, and AIH when assessed by Kaplan-Meier survival. Multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that graft and patient survival was similar in all 4 groups after adjusting for other confounders. Hispanics had a 24% lower risk of death (hazard ratio, 0.76) compared with whites in these combined cohorts after adjusting for all risk factors. In addition to other known risk factors, Karnofsky Performance Status score of 30% or less was associated with a 33% increase in risk of death (hazard ratio, 1.33) on multivariate analysis. Conclusion Patients with CC had similar graft and patient survival when compared with NASH, AC, and AIH cirrhosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)656-663
Number of pages8
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation


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