Title: Current status and future directions of liver transplantation for metabolic liver disease in children
Source: Pediatric Transplantation 2023, Oct 19. [E-publication]
Date of publication: October 2023
Publication type: Review article
Abstract: Orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) in the care of children with inborn errors of metabolism (IEM) is well established and represent the second most common indication for pediatric liver transplantation in most centers worldwide, behind biliary atresia. OLT offers cure of disease when a metabolic defect is confined to the liver, but may still be transformative on a patient’s quality of life reducing the chance of metabolic crises causing neurological damage in children be with extrahepatic involvement and no “functional cure.” Outcomes post-OLT for inborn errors of metabolism are generally excellent. However, this benefit must be balanced with consideration of a composite risk of morbidity, and commitment to a lifetime of post-transplant chronic disease management. An increasing number of transplant referrals for children with IEM has contributed to strain on graft access in many parts of the world. Pragmatic evaluation of IEM referrals is essential, particularly pertinent in cases where progression of extra-hepatic disease is anticipated, with long-term outcome expected to be poor. Decision to proceed with liver transplantation is highly individualized based on the child’s dynamic risk-benefit profile, their family unit, and their treating multidisciplinary team. Also to be considered is the chance of future treatments, such as gene therapies, emerging in the medium term.