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Reconstruction of Isolated Inferior Right Hepatic Vein(s) in Right Lobe Living Donor Liver Transplantation Using Polytetrafluoroethylene Grafts: A New Feasible Concept, Technique of ‘Bridging Conduit Venoplasty’ and Outcomes

Ashok Thorat, Shih-Chao Hsu, Horng-Ren Yang, Ping-Chun Li, Ming-Li Li, Chun-Chieh Yeh, Te-Hung Chen, Kin-Shing Poon, Long-Bin Jeng

(Organ Transplantation Center, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan)

Ann Transplant 2016; 21:735-744

DOI: 10.12659/AOT.900871


BACKGROUND: Right lobe living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) remains the most common form of liver transplantation in Asia. However, reconstruction of the venous outflow in a right liver allograft may pose technical difficulties if hepatic venous variations are present. Recently, much emphasis has been given to the reconstruction of large and multiple inferior right hepatic veins (IRHVs). The method of reconstructive technique, type of vascular grafts, and the outcome after the procedure have been a point of debate. In this report we discuss the IRHV reconstruction techniques using expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) vascular grafts and the outcomes after such reconstruction.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Out of 262 right liver allografts that underwent venous reconstruction using ePTFE vascular grafts, IRHVs required either venoplasty or second inferior vena cava (IVC) anastomosis in 99 recipients. Depending upon type of IRHV reconstruction, the recipients were divided in 2 groups: Group A (n=52): IRHV venoplasty using ePTFE graft, and group B (n=47): Direct IRHV-to-IVC anastomosis. The outcome after LDLT was compared for these 2 groups.
RESULTS: The ePTFE venoplasty group had significantly shorter warm ischemia time as compared to the direct to IVC anastomosis group (p<0.01, 95% confidence interval –10.96 to –2.92). There were no thrombotic complications in either group of recipients; 4.2% of the recipients from group B developed hepatic venous stenosis but with no clinical deterioration; and 1 patient from group A developed ePTFE graft migration in the second portion of the duodenum that required surgical exploration.
CONCLUSIONS: The IRHVs drain a considerable portion of the posterior sector of right liver allografts and thus must be reconstructed. Use of ePTFE vascular grafts for IRHV venoplasty is a safe and feasible concept that facilitates the outflow reconstruction of liver allografts.

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