Improved liver function after portal vein embolization and an elective right hepatectomy
Meier Raphael P. H., Toso Christian, Terraz Sylvain, Breguet Romain, Berney Thierry, Andres Axel, Jannot Anne-Sophie, Rubbia-Brandt Laura, Morel Philippe, Majno Pietro E.
BACKGROUND: Portal vein embolization (PVE) is used before extensive hepatic resections to increase the volume of the future remnant liver within acceptable safety margins (conventionally >0.6% of the patient’s weight). The objective was to determine whether pre-operative PVE impacts on post-operative liver function independently from the increase in liver volume. METHODS: The post-operative liver function of patients who underwent an anatomical right liver resection with (n = 28) and without (n = 53) PVE were retrospectively analysed. Donors of the right liver were also analysed (LD) (n = 17). RESULTS: Patient characteristics were similar, except for age, weight and American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) score that were lower in LD. Post-operative factor V and bilirubin levels were, respectively, higher and lower in patients with PVE compared with patients without PVE or LD (P < 0.05). Patients with PVE had an increased blood loss, blood transfusions and sinusoidal obstruction syndrome. The day-3 bilirubin level was 40% lower in the PVE group compared with the no-PVE group after adjustment for body weight, chemotherapy, operating time, Pringle time, blood transfusions, remnant liver volume, pre-operative bilirubin level and pre-operative prothrombin ratio (P = 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: For equivalent volumes, the immediate post-operative hepatic function appears to be better in livers prepared with PVE than in unprepared livers. Future studies should analyse whether the conventional inferior volume limit that allows a safe liver resection may be lowered when a PVE is performed.