Prognostic Value of Mitral Annular Calcification in Liver Transplant Patients: Implication in Posttransplant Outcomes

Transplantation. 2024 Mar 19. doi: 10.1097/TP.0000000000004981. Online ahead of print.


Background: With the rise of metabolic diseases and aging in liver transplant (LT) candidates, mitral annular calcification (MAC) is more recognizable. Despite cardiovascular risk becoming a leading cause of mortality in LT recipients, the influence of MAC remains unexamined. This study investigates the prevalence, related factors, and impact of MAC on LT outcomes.

Methods: We explored 4148 consecutive LT patients who underwent routine pretransplant echocardiography from 2008 to 2019. Multivariate logistic analysis and the tree-based Shapley additive explanation scores in machine learning were used to evaluate the significant and important related factors. The primary outcome was 30-d major adverse cardiac events (MACE), and the secondary outcome was a median of 5-y cumulative all-cause mortality.

Results: MAC was found in 123 (3.0%) patients. Significant and important related factors included age, alcoholic liver disease, chronic kidney disease, hyperuricemia, hypertension, and coronary artery disease. The MACE rate was higher in patients with MAC compared with those without MAC at 30 d (P < 0.001, adjusted hazard ratio 1.67; 95% confidence interval, 1.08-2.57). Patients with MAC had poorer cumulative overall survival probability compared with those without MAC (P = 0.0016; adjusted hazard ratio 1.47; 95% confidence interval, 1.01-2.15). Specifically, women with MAC had a poorer survival probability compared with men without MAC (65.0% versus 80.7%, P < 0.001) >10 y post-LT.

Conclusions: The presence of MAC before LT was linked to increased 30-d MACE and lower long-term survival rates, especially in women. Identification and management of MAC and potential risk factors are crucial for improving post-LT survival.