Italian experience in adult clinical intestinal and multivisceral transplantation: 6 years later

Transplant Proc. Jul-Aug 2007;39(6):1987-91. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2007.05.077.


Patients and methods: Between December 2000 and November 2006, 28 isolated intestinal transplants and nine multivisceral transplants (five with liver) from cadaveric donors have been performed for short gut syndrome (n = 15), chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction (n = 10), Gardner's syndrome (n = 9), radiation enteritis (n = 1), intestinal atresia (n = 1), and massive intestinal angiomatosis (n = 1). Indications for transplantations were: loss of venous access, recurrent sepsis due to central line infection, and/or major electrolyte and fluid imbalance. Liver dysfunction was present in 19 cases. All patients were adults of median age at transplant of 34.7 years and mean weight 59.6 kg. All recipients were on total parenteral nutrition for a mean time of 38.8 months. Mean donor/recipient body weight ratio was 1.1.

Results: The mean follow-up was 892 +/- 699 days. Twenty-five patients were alive (67.5%) with 3-year patient survivals of 70% for isolated intestinal transplantations and 41% for the multivisceral transplantations (P = .01). The mortality rate was 32.5% with losses due to sepsis (63%) or rejection. Our 3-year graft survival rates were 70% for isolated intestinal transplantations and 41% for multivisceral transplantations (P = .02); graftectomy rate was 16%. These were 88% of grafts working properly with patients on regular diet with no need for parenteral nutrition.

Discussion and conclusions: Induction therapy has reduced the doses of postoperative immunosuppressive agents, especially in the first period, lowering the risk of renal failure and sepsis, mucosal surveillance protocol for early detection of rejection dramatically reduced the number of severe acute chronic rejections.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Graft Survival
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Italy
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survival Analysis
  • Time Factors
  • Tissue and Organ Harvesting / methods
  • Viscera / transplantation*


  • Immunosuppressive Agents