Metabolic syndrome after liver transplantation: Short-term prevalence and pre- and post-operative risk factors

Maria Elena Lunati, Valeria Grancini, Francesca Agnelli, Stefano Gatti, Benedetta Masserini, Dario Zimbalatti, Giuseppe Pugliese, Giorgio Rossi, Maria Francesca Donato, Massimo Colombo, Paolo Beck-Peccoz, Emanuela Orsi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The metabolic syndrome is a common condition among liver transplanted patients and contributes to morbidity and mortality by favouring the development of cardiovascular diseases. Aims: This prospective study assessed the prevalence of metabolic syndrome in the first year after orthotopic liver transplantation, the associated pre-operative and post-operative risk factors and the influence of nutritional factors. Methods: 84 cirrhotic patients (75% male, mean age 53.9 ± 9.3 years) were evaluated at baseline and after liver transplantation. Metabolic syndrome was defined according to 2004 Adult Treatment Panel-III criteria. Nutritional habits were assessed using 3-day food records. Results: Prevalence of metabolic syndrome before orthotopic liver transplantation was 14/84 (16.6%); at 3, 6 and 12 months post-orthotopic liver transplantation it was 27/84 (32.1%), 30/84 (35.7%), and 32/81 (39.5%), respectively. Diabetes, family history of diabetes, and excess body weight at baseline independently correlated with incidence of metabolic syndrome. After orthotopic liver transplantation, patients with metabolic syndrome showed a higher increase in the intake of total energy and saturated fats and a higher prevalence of complications, especially cardiovascular events, than subjects without metabolic syndrome. Conclusion: Occurrence of metabolic syndrome is an early phenomenon after liver transplantation. Pre-operative and post-operative factors predispose patients to metabolic syndrome, which may be reduced by controlling modifiable risk factors, such as body weight and dietary intake.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)833-839
Number of pages7
JournalDigestive and Liver Disease
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013


  • Hypertension
  • New-onset diabetes after transplantation
  • Obesity
  • Orthotopic liver transplantation
  • Post-transplantation metabolic syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology
  • Hepatology


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