Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a serious health problem worldwide because of its association with hepatitis B and C viruses. In this setting, liver transplantation (LT) has become one of the best treatments since it removes both the tumor and the underlying liver disease. Due to the improvement of imaging techniques and surveillance programs, HCC are being detected earlier at a stage at which effective treatment is feasible. The prerequisite for long term success of LT for HCC depends on tumor load and strict selection criteria with regard to the size and number of tumor nodules. The need to obtain the optimal benefit from the limited number of organs available has prompted the maintenance of selection criteria in order to list only those patients with early HCC who have a better long-term outcome after LT. The indications for LT and organ allocation system led to many controversies around the use of LT in HCC patients. This review aims at giving the latest updated developments in LT for HCC focusing on selection criteria, diagnostic tools, prognostic factors, treatment on the waiting list, role of living donor liver transplantation and adjuvant therapy, and the impact of immunosuppression on HCC recurrence after LT.
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