Liver transplantation in alcoholic patients

Transpl Int. 2005 May;18(5):491-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1432-2277.2005.00079.x.


Alcoholic liver disease is one of the most common causes of cirrhosis and indications for orthotopic liver transplantation in Europe and North America. The reluctance to transplant alcoholics stems in part from the view that alcoholics bear responsibility for their illness. There is also the perception that the alcoholic person is likely to relapse into alcohol use after transplantation and thereby damage the allograft. In this review, we considered the evaluation for and outcome of liver transplantation in alcoholics with special attention to the specific risks of alcohol relapse, to show that alcoholism should be considered like other co-morbid states rather than as a moral flaw.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Alcoholism / therapy
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / complications
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / complications
  • Humans
  • Liver Diseases, Alcoholic / complications
  • Liver Diseases, Alcoholic / psychology
  • Liver Diseases, Alcoholic / surgery*
  • Liver Neoplasms / complications
  • Liver Transplantation* / adverse effects
  • Recurrence
  • Risk Factors
  • Time Factors