SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 4 -- Hepatitis C-positive liver transplant recipients live just as long whether the donor is HCV-positive or -negative, data from the national transplant network suggest.
HCV-positive organ recipients lived an average of 8.28 years after receiving a liver from an HCV-positive donor, Patrick G. Northrup, M.D., of the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, reported here at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.
After adjustment for known mortality risks associated with HCV, the survival did not differ from the 10-year mean among HCV-positive patients who received livers from HCV-negative donors.
"It looks like recipients with hepatitis C can receive an organ from someone with the hepatitis C antibodies and do as well as they would with a non-hepatitis C donor," said Dr. Northrup. "That's with careful patient selection."
The need for donor livers far exceeds the supply, and extended-criteria donor selection has offered a partial solution to the organ shortage, Dr. Northrup noted. Use of HCV-positive grafts for HCV-positive patients offers an example of marginal-donor expansion.
Cirrhosis secondary to HCV infection has accounted for as many as half of all liver transplants performed in the U.S., and more than four million people are currently infected, Dr. Northrup continued.
The issue of transplanting organs from HCV-positive donors has particular relevance in that population of liver transplant patients, he said, but the long-term consequences and outcomes had not been carefully studied.
Will is correct. Since most patients waiting for a liver transplant have hepatitis C it is very common for us transplant recipients to choose a liver with hepatitis C as only recipients with hepatitis C can receive a liver infected with hep C. It helps us to get a new liver a little sooner than if we wait for a liver that is not infected. All other recipients can not choose a hepatitis C infected liver. All of my friends who have had liver transplants and were infected with hepatitis C choose Hep C infected livers and are doing fine.
If a patient with hepatitis C receives a liver without hepatitis C when the donor liver being to be infused with the patients blood the hepatitis C in the blood infects the liver and the donor liver soon becomes infected with hepatitis C.
The only thing you can NOT do is be a Living Organ Donor where you give a part of your liver to someone else.
So please become a organ donor today and register with your state's donor registry and be part of the solution. Thank you!!!
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