Prolonged Waiting Times (prolonged + waiting_time)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Current controversies surrounding liver transplantation for hepatocellular carcinoma

Mauricio F Silva
Abstract Liver transplantation (LT) for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has progressed rapidly over the last decade from a futile therapy to the first choice therapy for suitable patients. Excellent outcomes of LT for HCC can be largely attributed to the use of the Milan Criteria, which have restricted LT to patients with early stage tumors. These criteria may be conservative, and it is likely that a subset of patients with tumors beyond these criteria can have acceptable outcomes. However, there is currently insufficient data to accept more liberal criteria as a standard of care, and a higher quality evidence base must be achieved to prevent poor utilization of valuable donor liver resources. In the future, it is probable that more sophisticated selection criteria will emerge incorporating aspects of tumor biology beyond tumor size and number. Dropout from the waiting list due to tumor progression remains a clinical challenge particularly in regions with prolonged waiting times. Priority allocation using HCC MELD points is a practical and transparent solution that has successfully reduced waitlist dropout for HCC patients. Further refinements of the HCC MELD point system are required to ensure equity of access to LT for non-HCC patients and prioritization of HCC patients with the highest risk of dropout. Improving the evidence base for pre-LT locoregional therapy to prevent waitlist dropout is an urgent and difficult challenge for the LT community. In the interim transplant clinicians must restrict the use of these therapies to those patients who are most likely to benefit from them. [source]

Renal Transplantation Across HLA and ABO Antibody Barriers: Integrating Paired Donation into Desensitization Protocols

Robert A. Montgomery
The field of desensitization and incompatible transplantation has made great gains over the past decade. There are now several options and effective therapies for many patients who face antibody barriers. Kidney paired donation (KPD) and desensitization have traditionally been considered competing strategies and patients have been offered one or the other without regard for the probability of a successful outcome. It is now possible to predict which donor/recipient phenotypes will benefit from each of these modalities. KPD should be favored among patients with immunologic phenotypes that are likely to match without prolonged waiting times. However, as many as 50% of patients with incompatible donors will fail to find a match in a KPD pool and many of these patients could be desensitized to their donor. Positive crossmatch and ABO incompatible transplantation has been accomplished in selective cases without the need for heavy immunosuppression or B-cell ablative therapy. Patients who are both difficult-to-match due to broad sensitization and hard-to-desensitize because of strong donor reactivity can often be successfully transplanted through a combination of desensitization and KPD. Using these various modalities it is estimated that most patients with incompatible live donors can undergo successful renal transplantation. [source]

The early pregnancy assessment project: The effect of cooperative care in the emergency department for management of early pregnancy complications

Background: Early pregnancy assessment clinics (EPAC) have been introduced and accepted as the gold standard for management of early pregnancy problems (EPP). However, EPAC are not universally available and management of EPP within the emergency department (ED) can result in prolonged waiting times, inappropriate use of resources and no clear treatment or follow-up plan being implemented. Aim: To assess the effect of an early pregnancy assessment protocol (EPAP) in the ED, designed to create a cultural change among doctors in relation to EPP in order to minimise use of resources, improve treatment times for patients and establish a clear management plan where dedicated EPAC services are not available. Methods: An intervention, the EPAP was introduced to the ED and retrospective and prospective audits of the patients were carried out to assess the effect. Results: Implementation of the EPAP decreased treatment time by 55%, representations by 48%, pathology blood tests by 56% and formal imaging services by 85%. Gynaecological consultation increased by 37% for each patient visit to the ED and by 9% for each EPP. Total direct cost saving was 63% per patient and no adverse outcomes were recorded. Conclusion: Introduction of the EPAP was successful in creating cultural change and delivering clinical and financial benefits to the hospital, patients and staff. Early gynaecological consultation and bedside ultrasound scanning within the ED were key factors. Similar benefits could be reproduced in other institutions and for other clinical scenarios where a need has been identified. [source]

Pre-transplant treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma: assessment of tumor necrosis in explanted livers

Linda L Wong
Abstract:, Although liver transplantation (LT) is likely the most effective therapy for localized hepatocellular cancer (HCC), limited donor livers have resulted in prolonged waiting times for transplant. Pre-transplant therapy such as transarterial chemoembolization (TACE), percutaneous ethanol injection (PEI), and radiofrequency ablation (RFA) may be needed to sustain patients who are waiting. Records, imaging studies, and pathology to identify tumor necrosis on 15 explanted livers with HCC were reviewed. Forty-nine nodules were removed from 15 explanted livers. Five nodules in three livers that received no pre-transplant therapy were excluded from the study. Of the remaining 44 nodules in 12 patients, 29 (66%) had 75% or more tumor necrosis. Fifteen nodules in five patients had <75% necrosis and these were due to local/non-local recurrences or perhaps suboptimal treatment with RFA, TACE or cisplatin gel injection. Mean waiting time for LT was 162.5 d. Nine of 13 patients had a different number of nodules when listed as were seen at explant, although stage changed in only three patients. One patient died 48 months post-LT (recurrent HCC), while the remaining patients are alive 2,55 months post-LT. We conclude that pre-transplant treatments for HCC are generally effective in achieving tumor necrosis. Factors involved in eventual extent of HCC seen at LT may include adequacy of treatment, accuracy of imaging techniques, local/non-local recurrences, and time waiting for transplant. We now need to determine if tumor necrosis can allow patients to wait longer for transplant and eventually affect long-term outcome. [source]