The American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases announces the release of a new practice guideline on the Evaluation of the Pediatric Patient for Liver Transplantation. This practice guideline was developed in collaboration with the American Society of Transplantation and the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition. AASLD published an updated guideline devoted to adult patients in the March 2014 of HEPATOLOGY. These guidelines update a previous version last updated in 2005 which addressed both adult and pediatric patients in one document.
While pediatric liver transplants account for approximately 7.8% of all liver transplants in the United States, sufficient differences between pediatric and adult patients seeking liver transplantation now require independent, yet complementary documents. The evaluation of pediatric issues at each level of the evaluation process for liver transplantation is the focus of this guideline. Disease categories suitable for referral to a pediatric liver transplantation program are similar to adults: acute liver failure, autoimmune, cholestasis, metabolic or genetic, oncologic, vascular, and infectious. However, specific etiologies and outcomes differ widely from adult patients, justifying independent pediatric guidelines.
The purpose of this new guideline is to provide an evidence-based set of recommendations for the evaluation of pediatric patients who are potentially candidates for liver transplantation.