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ORIGINAL ARTICLES  XV CONGRESSO NAZIONALE DELLA SOCIETÀ POLISPECIALISTICA DEI GIOVANI CHIRURGHI


Minerva Chirurgica 2002 June;57(3):301-8

language: English, Italian

Surgical strategy in abdominal organs retrieval from elderly donors

Nardo B., Catena F., Montalti R., Puviani L., Cavallari G., Beltempo P., Bertelli R., Piazzese E., Pacilè V., Cavallari A.


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Background. There are no literature data on surgical problems that can be encountered during harvesting of grafts from elderly donors. The aim of our study was to report our experience during liver harvesting from donors over 70 years old and during transplantations of these grafts.
Methods. From April 1986 to December 2001, 686 OLT in 599 patients were performed at the Liver Transplant Unit of the S. Orsola Hospital in Bologna. In particular we harvested 68 livers from donors with mean age of 75.4±4.5 years (range 70-87). The cause of brain death was a spontaneous cerebral haemorrhage in 58 cases and trauma in 10 cases. Thirteen donors were previously submitted to cardiovascular surgery. Three subjects had an abdominal aorta aneurysm 5, 6 and 7 cm large respectively, involving the iliac arteries, not diagnosed before the harvesting procedure. In 60 donors atherosclerosis was present.
Results. Out of 68 transplanted patients with donor over 70 years of age we observed 13 arterial complications (19.1%): 7 hepatic artery thrombosis, 3 hepatic artery stenosis, 1 iliac graft thrombosis, 1 splenic artery stump rupture and 1 hepatic artery rupture both leading to fatal hemoperitoneum. A primary non-function occurred in 4 cases treated with retransplantation. The 1- and 3-year graft survival was 74 and 56.2%, respectively; the 1 and 3-years patient survival was 85.8 and 72.5% respectively.
Conclusions. Harvesting technique from old donors is not so different from standard procedure: however it is fundamental surgeon's experience to optimize organ retrieval from these donors.

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