Hong-Yu Li, Yong-Gang Wei, Lv-Nan Yan, Bo Li, Department of Liver and Vascular Surgery, Center of Liver Transplantation, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, Sichuan Province, China.
To evaluate survival and recurrence after salvage liver transplantation (SLT) for the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) compared with primary liver transplantation (PLT) using a meta-analysis.
Literature on SLT versus PLT for the treatment of HCC published between 1966 and July 2011 was retrieved. A meta-analysis was conducted to estimate pooled survival and disease-free rates. A fixed or random-effect model was established to collect the data.
The differences in overall survival and disease-free survival rates at 1-year, 3-year and 5-year survival rates were not statistically significant between SLT group and PLT group (P > 0.05). After stratifying the various studies by donor source and Milan criteria, we found that: (1) Living donor liver transplantation recipients had significantly higher 1-year survival rate, lower 3-year and 5-year survival rates compared with deceased-donor liver transplantation (DDLT) recipients. And in DDLT recipients they had better 1-year and 5-year disease-free survival rate in SLT group; and (2) No difference was seen in 1-year, 3-year and 5-year survival rates between two groups who beyond Milan criteria at the time of liver transplantation.
SLT can be effectively performed for patients with recurrence or deterioration of liver function after hepatectomy for HCC. It does not increase the perioperative mortality and has a similar long-term survival rates compared to PLT.