Backgrounds & Aims: Treating patients with decompensated cirrhosis with direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy while on the waiting list for liver transplantation results in substantial improvement of liver function allowing 1 in 4 patients to be removed from the waiting list or delisted, as reported in a previous study promoted by the European Liver and Intestine Transplant Association (ELITA). The aim of this study was to report on clinical outcomes of delisted patients, including mortality risk, hepatocellular carcinoma development and clinical decompensation requiring relisting. Methods: One hundred and forty-two HCV-positive patients on the liver transplant waiting list for decompensated cirrhosis, negative for hepatocellular carcinoma, between February 2014 and June 2015 were treated with DAA therapy and were prospectively followed up. Results: Forty-four patients (30.9%) were delisted following clinical improvement. This percentage was higher than in the original study because of a number of patients being delisted long after starting DAAs. The median Child-Pugh and MELD score of delisted patients was 5.5 and 9 respectively. Four patients were relisted, because of HCC diagnosis in 1 case and 3 patients developed ascites. One further patient died (2.4%) because of rapidly progressing hepatocellular carcinoma twenty-two months after delisting. Of the 70 patients who received a liver graft, 9 died (13%). Conclusions: Antiviral therapy allows for a long-term improvement of liver function and the delisting of one-third of treated patients with risk of liver-related complications after delisting being very low.
- direct-acting antivirals
- liver transplantation