The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of hypoxia and hypotension during the agonal phase of donor warm ischemia time (DWIT) on hepatic ischemia/reperfusion injury (IRI) and complications in donation after circulatory death (DCD) liver transplantation. A retrospective single-center study of 93 DCD liver transplants (Maastricht type III) was performed. DWIT was divided into 2 periods: the agonal phase (from withdrawal of treatment [WoT] until circulatory arrest) and the asystolic phase (circulatory arrest until cold perfusion). A drop to <80% in peripheral oxygenation (SpO2) was considered as hypoxia in the agonal phase (SpO2-agonal) and a drop to <50 mm Hg as hypotension in the agonal phase (SBP-agonal). Peak postoperative aspartate transaminase level >3000 U/L was considered as severe hepatic IRI. SpO2 dropped within 2 minutes after WoT <80%, whereas the systolic blood pressure dropped to <50 mm Hg after 9 minutes, resulting in a longer SpO2-agonal (13 minutes) than SBP-agonal (6 minutes). In multiple logistic regression analysis, only duration of SpO2-agonal was associated with severe hepatic IRI (P = 0.006) and not SBP-agonal (P = 0.32). Also, recipients with long SpO2-agonal (>13 minutes) had more complications with a higher Comprehensive Complication Index during hospital admission (43.0 versus 32.0; P = 0.002) and 90-day graft loss (26% versus 6%; P = 0.01), compared with recipients with a short SpO2-agonal (≤13 minutes). Furthermore, Cox proportional hazard modeling identified a long SpO2-agonal as a risk factor for longterm graft loss (hazard ratio, 3.30; 95% confidence interval, 1.15-9.48; P = 0.03). In conclusion, the onset of hypoxia during the agonal phase is related to the severity of hepatic IRI and postoperative complications. Therefore, SpO2 <80% should be considered as the start of functional DWIT in DCD liver transplantation.,
Liver Transplantation
Department of Surgery

Kalisvaart, M., de Haan, J., Polak, W., N. M. IJzermans, J. (Jan), Gommers, D., Metselaar, H., & de Jonge, J. (2018). Onset of Donor Warm Ischemia Time in Donation After Circulatory Death Liver Transplantation: Hypotension or Hypoxia?. Liver Transplantation, 24(8), 1001–1010. doi:10.1002/lt.25287