Improving Liver Transplant Outcomes for Hepatitis C Virus Hepatocellular Carcinoma in the Direct-Acting Antiviral Therapy Era

Transplant Proc. 2022 Sep;54(7):1834-1838. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2022.03.070. Epub 2022 Aug 4.


Background: Direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy has transformed the outcomes of liver transplant (LT) with hepatitis C virus (HCV). This study aimed to analyze the effects of DAA treatment for HCV-associated hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in LT.

Methods: We included patients confirmed with HCC on explant, analyzed data from United Network for Organ Sharing, and defined the pre-DAA era (2012-2013) and DAA era (2014-2016).

Results: HCV-associated HCC cases totaled 4778 (62%) during the study period. In the DAA era, the median recipient age was older and the median days on the waiting list were longer. For the donor, median age, body mass index, and the rate of HCV significantly increased in the DAA era. In pathology, the median largest tumor size was significantly higher; however, the rate of completed tumor necrosis was significant higher in the DAA era. The 3-year graft/patient survival had significantly improved in the DAA era. In multivariable analysis, the DAA era (hazard ratio, 0.79; 95% confidence interval, 0.68-0.91) had significantly affected the 3-year graft survival.

Conclusions: DAA has a significant beneficial effect on LT. In the DAA era, graft survival for HCV-associated HCC has been significantly improving.

MeSH terms

  • Antiviral Agents / therapeutic use
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular*
  • Hepacivirus
  • Hepatitis C* / complications
  • Hepatitis C* / drug therapy
  • Hepatitis C* / surgery
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms*
  • Liver Transplantation* / adverse effects
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Antiviral Agents