Usefulness of preoperative stress perfusion imaging in predicting prognosis after liver transplantation

Academic Article


  • The role of preoperative stress single-photon emission computed tomographic (SPECT) imaging in patients with end-stage liver disease who underwent liver transplantation is not well established. We reviewed medical records of patients who had liver transplantation at our institution between January 1998 and November 2001. During this time, 339 patients (213 men, aged 51 ± 11 years) underwent liver transplantation. Of these, 87 patients had preoperative stress SPECT imaging. Diabetes mellitus (30% vs 11%), hypertension (26% vs 12%), and coronary artery disease (15% vs 7%) were more prevalent in those with than without SPECT (p <0.01 each). The stress SPECT perfusion images were normal in 78 patients (91%) and the left ventricular ejection fraction was 72 ± 10%. SPECT images revealed ascites in 66% and splenomegaly in 83% of patients. There were 35 total deaths (10%) and 5 nonfatal myocardial infarctions over a mean follow-up of 21 ± 13 months. Most deaths (32 of 35) were noncardiac and sepsis was the most common cause of death. A normal SPECT study had a 99% negative predictive value for perioperative cardiac events. Kaplan-Meier survival curves showed an 87% 2-year cumulative survival rate in the total group. Thus, in patients undergoing liver transplantation, 2-year survival depends on early noncardiac events. A normal stress SPECT study identified patients at a very low risk for early and late cardiac events despite a higher risk profile. SPECT images also revealed unique findings, such as ascites and splenomegaly, which could produce image artifacts and may interfere with accurate image interpretation. © 2003 by Excerpta Medica, Inc.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 27016719
  • Author List

  • Zoghbi GJ; Patel AD; Ershadi RE; Heo J; Bynon JS; Iskandrian AE
  • Start Page

  • 1066
  • End Page

  • 1071
  • Volume

  • 92
  • Issue

  • 9