Title

Big Data in Transplantation Practice-the Devil Is in the Detail-Fontan-associated Liver Disease.

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2021

Identifier

DOI: 10.1097/TP.0000000000003308

Abstract

BACKGROUND: As a result of the Fontan procedure, the prognosis of congenital single-ventricle heart disease has improved, with many affected children surviving into adulthood. However, the unanticipated consequences of chronic exposure to Fontan hemodynamics have revealed a new set of secondary noncardiac complications. Fontan-associated liver disease (FALD) is characterized by progressive hepatic fibrosis in nearly all patients post-Fontan, with the potential to develop cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma, and the need for liver transplantation. A lack of data regarding FALD-related prognosis makes consideration of indications for and timing of heart alone versus combined heart-liver transplantation challenging.

METHODS: A multidisciplinary group within the American Society for Transplantation analyzed several administrative datasets to study the epidemiology of FALD.

RESULTS: This approach presented several obstacles, and efforts to characterize FALD were limited by a lack of Fontan- and FALD-specific diagnostic codes and an inability to follow individual patients through multiple health systems. Several ongoing Fontan registries were also reviewed but these do not adequately capture FALD-related variables. Such barriers highlight the need for large-scale data collection in patients post-Fontan to better understand and care for this complex population.

CONCLUSIONS: This study emphasizes the challenges of studying emerging transplant-related diagnoses in existing datasets and the need for mechanisms to adapt registries to appropriately identify patients with rare or emerging conditions.

Journal Title

Transplantation

Volume

105

Issue

1

First Page

18

Last Page

22

Library Record

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