The pediatric end-stage liver disease (PELD) model as a predictor of survival benefit and posttransplant survival in pediatric liver transplant recipients

Liver Transpl. 2006 Mar;12(3):475-80. doi: 10.1002/lt.20703.


The pediatric end-stage liver disease (PELD) model accurately estimates 90-day waitlist mortality for pediatric liver transplant candidates, but it has been unclear if PELD can identify patients who will derive survival benefit from undergoing liver transplantation (LT), if it correlates with posttransplant survival, or if it can identify patients for whom LT would be futile. Pediatric patients who underwent LT between 2001 and 2004 were enrolled through the United Network for Organ Sharing Organ Procurement and Transplant Network database. Survival benefit was measured in terms of life-years gained during the first year after LT. Complete data were available for 1,247 patients: 53% were listed as Status 1 at the time of orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT), while the remaining 47% had PELD scores. Only in patients with a PELD of 17+ or those designated as United Network for Organ Sharing Status 1 derived a survival benefit within 1 year of LT; patients with a PELD score of < or = 16 did not. In addition, a statistically significant association was seen between 1-year post-OLT survival and PELD at LT (P = 0.03). No "threshold" PELD score, beyond which risk of post-LT mortality increased dramatically, was apparent. In conclusion, pediatric patients with a PELD score of 17+ derive survival benefit early after LT, and increasing PELD scores are associated with increasing transplant benefit after liver transplantation. PELD does correlate with posttransplant survival but should not be used as a marker for futility.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms*
  • Cause of Death*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Graft Rejection
  • Graft Survival
  • Humans
  • Liver Failure / diagnosis
  • Liver Failure / mortality*
  • Liver Failure / surgery
  • Liver Transplantation / methods
  • Liver Transplantation / mortality*
  • Male
  • Postoperative Complications / mortality*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Probability
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Survival Analysis
  • Time Factors
  • Tissue and Organ Procurement*
  • Waiting Lists