Health-related quality of life in adult transplant recipients more than 15 years after orthotopic liver transplantation

Transpl Int. 2008 Nov;21(11):1052-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1432-2277.2008.00733.x. Epub 2008 Aug 1.


With continuously rising survival rates following orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT), health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of transplant recipients becomes increasingly important. Recipients more than 15 years after OLT were studied retrospectively. HRQOL in 104 adult liver transplant recipients surviving more than 15 years after OLT was assessed using the German Version of the 36-Item Health Survey (SF-36). Liver transplant recipients surviving more than 15 years after OLT scored lower in all categories of SF-36 revealing a poor HRQOL in comparison to the German reference population. A statistical significance was reached in almost all SF-36 categories with the exceptions of mental health and bodily pain, where our study population scored similarly to the reference population. Job rehabilitation after OLT had a positive effect on HRQOL. Patients who returned to their job during the first year after OLT scored significantly higher in the SF-36 categories of physical functioning and role physical. Marital status and the immunosuppression used didn't affect HRQOL as there was no statistical significance reached in any of the comparisons performed. More than 15 years after OLT, long-term survivors present a poor HRQOL comparable to the reference population. Occupational rehabilitation was the only factor shown to positively influence long-term HRQOL.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Calcineurin Inhibitors
  • Employment / statistics & numerical data
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppression / psychology
  • Liver Failure / therapy
  • Liver Transplantation / mortality
  • Liver Transplantation / psychology*
  • Male
  • Marital Status / statistics & numerical data
  • Middle Aged
  • Quality of Life / psychology*
  • Socioeconomic Factors


  • Calcineurin Inhibitors
  • Enzyme Inhibitors