Paediatric Liver Transplant Life Expectancy & Survival Rate

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Medically Reviewed by Dr. Aman Priya Khanna
Written by Sangeeta Sharma, last updated on 15 December 2023
Paediatric Liver Transplant Life Expectancy & Survival Rate

A paediatric liver transplant is a life-saving procedure. But one needs to know that the paediatric liver transplant survival rate depends on many factors. The survival rate indicates the percentage of children who survive a certain period after the transplant. 

It provides insight into the overall success of the procedure in improving their long-term health and quality of life. Many factors can influence life expectancy and outcomes. Read the blog to learn more about liver transplant expectancy and survival rates. 

Paediatric Liver Transplant Life Expectancy

Paediatric liver transplant life expectancy refers to the average lifespan of a child who has undergone a liver transplant procedure.
The life expectancy following a paediatric liver transplant can differ depending on several variables, including : 

  1. The medical complications

  2. The child's age at the time of the procedure

  3. Their general health

  4. How well do they follow to post-transplant medications 

  5. Follow-up care 

  6. Complications if any

  7. Organ rejection if it might occur.

According to studies and reports from some of the most reliable liver transplant organisations, the paediatric liver transplant life expectancy has been known to go up to 20 years.

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Paediatric Liver Transplant Survival Rates

The paediatric liver transplant survival rates are often remarkably high. After a paediatric liver transplant, the survival rate at one year is higher than 90%, and at five years, it is between 80 and 85%, according to research and medical studies.
Numerous kids survive into adulthood with a functional donated liver as long-term survival rates for juvenile liver transplant recipients continue to rise.

Factors Affecting Life Expectancy and Survival Rates

A paediatric liver transplant is one of the most effective ways with the help of which a child can eliminate liver-related problems.
However, certain factors or risks threaten life expectancy and survival rates. These include: 

  1. Post-operation Complications: In some cases, the patients develop post-transplant complications.
    These include infections, bile duct problems, vascular complications, etc., which can impact the function of the liver and, subsequently, life expectancy. 

  2. Immunosuppressants: A patient is advised to use immunosuppressants to control the body's mechanism towards destroying the new organ.
    In cases where these medications are not taken regularly, there are high chances of liver problems.

  3. Diet and Nutrition: The meals consumed by a person must be well-balanced and healthy.
    One needs to consult their dietician after the transplant and ensure following the diet recommended to avoid problems and boost life expectancy.

  4. Exercise: Physical activities and exercises must be a regular lifestyle of a post-paediatric liver transplant. This keeps a person fit not only mentally but also physically.
    People suffering from obesity and excessive weight have been known to be at a higher risk of compromised life expectancy post-surgery.

  5. Graft Failure: This is closely associated with many postoperative risk factors.
    The postoperative factors include the parameters after the transplant, the health condition of the donor as well as the recipient, intraoperative care, etc.

  6. Rejection of the New Organ: In cases where the body fails to accept the organ transplant, there are higher chances of retransplantation or a decline in life expectancy.
    One must take immunosuppressants and other required medications to avoid this situation.

A doctor will consider a patient's chance of a successful surgery and increased lifespan before deciding to do a liver transplant.
Suppose an individual has additional chronic illnesses that could compromise the success of a transplant. In that case, they may not be a good candidate.

Paediatric Liver Transplant Outcome

Paediatric liver transplantation is a robust technique that offers great long-term survival. Even while patient outcomes have generally improved with more experience, this effect is most noticeable in patients under one year old.

Retransplantation continues to carry an increasing decline in survival with the number of allografts performed, despite being beneficial in a sizable proportion of patients.
Small children no longer have to wait as long for liver transplants because of the use of living-related and in situ split-liver allografts. These have also increased patient survival.

The Success Rate of Paediatric Liver Transplant

The success rate for paediatric liver transplants in India is up to 90%. This means that with the help of this transplant rate, the children are given an opportunity to lead a better and healthy life.

Improving the Life Expectancy and Survival Rate

To ensure that a child can pave their way towards a healthy and ailment-free life, collective efforts are required to provide them with a balanced life and environment.
Some essential do’s and don'ts for paediatric liver transplant patients include: 

Do’s

  1. Take the Medications: It is essential for the child to regularly take the medications prescribed by their doctor to avoid problems.

  2. Eating a Healthy Diet: An essential step toward boosting the paediatric liver transplant, a balanced diet is vital.

  3. Physical Activity: Exercises in moderation must always be encouraged to ensure the good health of the patient.

  4. Regular Checkups: One must visit their healthcare providers regularly to keep problems afar.

  5. Maintaining Hygiene: Practising healthy habits such as regularly washing hands etc., are a must, especially for those taking immunosuppressant medications.

Don’ts 

  1. Major Changes in the Diet: Never make self-changes in the diet without consulting the healthcare providers.

  2. Stop Medications: It is strictly not advisable for the patient to stop medications prescribed by their doctors.

  3. Avoid Symptoms and Indications: One needs to understand that the earlier the symptom are acknowledged and reported, the better for their health.

  4. Smoking, Alcohol, and Drug Use: The child should be kept away from all these substances as they can damage their health significantly.

  5. Close Proximity to Unhealthy People: The immunity post pediatric liver transplant is mostly low.
    They must not come in close contact with people who are sick and are under infections.

Takeaway

Children with end-stage liver failure have hope and better results thanks to the complex yet life-changing procedure known as paediatric liver transplantation. This surgery offers young patients and their families a glimmer of hope due to its high survival rates and the possibility of an average life expectancy. 

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Suggested Reads

  1. Paediatric Liver Transplant Complications

  2. Paediatric Liver Transplant Waiting List

  3. Top 10 Paediatric Liver Transplant Hospitals

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average paediatric liver transplant life expectancy?

The average paediatric liver transplant life expectancy is up to 90%. When a child receives a liver transplant, their typical life expectancy can vary based on a number of variables.

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What is the survival rate for paediatric liver transplant patients?

Paediatric liver transplant survival rates are now much higher. The survival rate for paediatric liver transplant patients is between 80-85%.
It is crucial to remember that survival rates can differ based on several variables, including : 

  1. The child's age

  2. The underlying disease

  3. The state of the donor's liver

  4. Post-transplant treatment.

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How long can a child expect to live after a liver transplant?

The child liver transplant life expectancy is at a high like never before. 90% of the children can enjoy a good quality of life for over five years.
However, one must know that a child's life expectancy following a liver transplant can vary based on several circumstances.
Children who receive liver transplants generally have a good chance of living long, healthy lives.


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What are the paediatric liver transplant outcomes?

The results of a paediatric liver transplant can differ based on several variables. Paediatric liver transplant outcomes generally have a good chance of success and living long, healthy lives.
After a successful paediatric liver transplant, patients may experience many positive effects, such as: 

  1. Increased liver function

  2. Remission of the underlying liver disease

  3. Improved quality of life

  4. The capacity to engage in typical childhood activities.

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What is the success rate of paediatric liver transplant surgeries?

The paediatric liver transplant success rate has been above 85% for over 5 years.  Children with end-stage liver disease have had excellent outcomes from paediatric liver transplant surgery in terms of their health and survival. Factors affecting their survival rate are : 

  1. The underlying illness

  2. The child's age and general health

  3. The quality of the donor's liver

  4. The surgical team's experience 

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What are the common complications of paediatric liver transplantation?

Although paediatric liver transplantationcomplications process with significant risks, it can also have life-saving effects. Some of the frequent side effects are : 

  1. Organ rejection

  2. Infection

  3. Bile duct difficulties

  4. Vascular issues

  5. Immunosuppressive medication side effects

  6. Post-transplant complications such as fluid buildup, haemorrhage, or wound infection conditions. 

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What is the long-term prognosis for children who undergo liver transplants?

Paediatric liver transplant long-term prognosis for kids who get liver transplants might vary depending on several factors.
Most children see significant improvements in health and quality of life following a successful liver transplant. Long-term prognosis includes: 

  1. Appropriate medical care

  2. Adherence to post-transplant medications

  3. Routine follow-up exams 

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What is the mortality rate associated with paediatric liver transplants?

The mortality rate related to paediatric liver transplants has considerably decreased over time. Higher success rates and lower mortality have been made possible by improvements in surgical methods, post-transplant care, and immunosuppressive medications.

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What are the survival statistics for paediatric liver transplant recipients?

Paediatric liver transplant survival rates by age have significantly improved over time. Medical research and transplant registries show that paediatric liver transplant recipients often have reasonable overall survival rates.
The survival statistics for paediatric liver transplant recipients can increase to 85-90%. 

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How does the age of a child affect their survival rates after a liver transplant?

Children's chances of surviving a liver transplant vary depending on their age. The survival rates of younger children are often higher than older children or adults.
This is due to the fact that younger kids typically have : 

  1. More muscular immune systems

  2. Better regeneration capabilities

  3. better tolerance to the effects of surgery

  4. Immunosuppressive medicines

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How does the underlying condition of a child impact their liver transplant survival rates?

Paediatric liver transplant survival rates by underlying conditions following liver transplantation might be significantly impacted by their underlying health. Some underlying liver conditions may be more challenging to treat or carry a higher risk of complications, which can have an impact on the long-term results of transplantation.

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What are the survival rates for a paediatric liver transplant at different transplant centres?

The success rates of paediatric liver transplant survival can range between transplant facilities.
The results may vary depending on 

  1. The level of medical team experience

  2. The number of paediatric liver transplants

  3. Survival rates by transplant centres performed

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What factors can affect life expectancy after a paediatric liver transplant?

The life expectancy of a child who receives a liver transplant can be affected by a number of circumstances. These include: 

  1. Controlled body weight 

  2. Whole liver DDLT compared to LDLT.

  3. Post-operative hepatic artery complications

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What factors influence the survival rates of paediatric liver transplant patients?

A variety of factors may have an impact on the survival rates of paediatric liver transplant recipients. These include: 

  1. Age of the child 

  2. Stage of liver disease 

  3. Donor compatibility

  4. Immunosupresnats management 

  5. Overall health

  6. Experience and expertise of healthcare providers 

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Has the survival rate for paediatric liver transplants improved over time?

Yes, the survival rate for paediatric liver transplants has improved significantly over time. Today, children undergoing liver transplants expect a survival rate of about 85 to 90%.

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How is the long-term follow-up conducted for paediatric liver transplant patients?

Long-term follow-up is decided and conducted according to several variables, including the length of time since the transplant. It depends upon: 

  1. The stability of the patient's condition

  2. The unique procedures of the transplant hospital

  3. The frequency of follow-up appointments

Although regular monitoring is generally advised for the duration of the patient's life, initial follow-up consultations may be more frequent and then gradually spread out over time.

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What is the quality of life for children after liver transplantation?

The quality of life for children after liver transplantation can vary depending on various factors. But in most cases where the transplant is successful, the children can go on to live a happy, healthy and normal life.

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What are the rejection rates for paediatric liver transplants?

Organ rejection happens when the transplant patient's immune system perceives the liver as alien and launches an immunological response against it. The transplanted organ may suffer harm as a result, which may affect its functionality.

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What are the immunosuppression protocols used in paediatric liver transplantation?

Paediatric liver transplant immunosuppression measures significantly prevent organ rejection and maintain the transplanted liver's health and functionality.

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What are the survival rates for children on the waiting list for liver transplants?

The waiting time for a liver transplant varies widely and is influenced by several variables, including : 

  1. Number of suitable organ donors

  2. The severity of the disease

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What is involved in the post-transplant monitoring of paediatric liver transplant patients?

After a pediatric liver transplant, regular check-ups and tests are done to ensure the new liver is functioning well and detect any early complications. 
It includes blood tests, imaging scans, and follow-up appointments to ensure the health and well-being of the patient after the transplant.

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Are there guidelines for post-transplant care in paediatric liver transplant patients?

Yes, there are guidelines for post-transplant care for children who have had liver transplants. They offer uniform guidelines for caring for and monitoring children who have undergone liver transplants


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What are the graft survival rates in paediatric liver transplantation?

Paediatric liver transplantation survival rates by age are based on many variables, including: 

  1. The child's underlying health

  2. Quality of the donor organ

  3. Surgical Procedure

  4. Post-transplant care

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References

All the articles on HexaHealth are supported by verified medically-recognized sources such as; peer-reviewed academic research papers, research institutions, and medical journals. Our medical reviewers also check references of the articles to prioritize accuracy and relevance. Refer to our detailed editorial policy for more information.


  1. Hong SK, Yi NJ, Hong K, Han ES, Lee JM, Choi Y, et al. Risk Factors Affecting Outcomes in Pediatric Liver Transplantation: A Real-World Single-Center Experience. Annals of Transplantation. 2021 May 9;26.link
  2. Hou Y, Wang X, Yang H, Zhong S. Survival and Complication of Liver Transplantation in Infants: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Frontiers in Pediatrics. 2021 Apr 29;9.link
  3. Goss JA, Shackleton CR, McDiarmid SV, Maggard M, Swenson K, Seu P, et al. Long-Term Results of Pediatric Liver Transplantation. Annals of Surgery. 1998 Sep;228(3):411–20.link
  4. Liver Transplant | Children’s Liver Foundation [Internet]. childrenliverindia.org. [cited 2023 Jul 24].link
  5. Cuenca AG, Kim HB, Vakili K. Pediatric liver transplantation. Seminars in Pediatric Surgery [Internet]. 2017 Aug 1 [cited 2023 Jul 24];26(4):217–23.link
  6. Chan MF, Kamala Devi M. Factors Affecting Life Expectancy. Asia Pacific Journal of Public Health. 2012 Aug 2;27(2):136–46.link
  7. Liver Transplant | Support & Help | Children’s Liver Disease Foundation [Internet]. Childrens Liver Disease Foundation.link

Updated on : 15 December 2023

Reviewer

Dr. Aman Priya Khanna

Dr. Aman Priya Khanna

MBBS, DNB General Surgery, Fellowship in Minimal Access Surgery, FIAGES

12 Years Experience

Dr Aman Priya Khanna is a well-known General Surgeon, Proctologist and Bariatric Surgeon currently associated with HealthFort Clinic, Health First Multispecialty Clinic in Delhi. He has 12 years of experience in General Surgery and worke...View More

Author

Sangeeta Sharma

Sangeeta Sharma

BSc. Biochemistry I MSc. Biochemistry (Oxford College Bangalore)

6 Years Experience

She has extensive experience in content and regulatory writing with reputed organisations like Sun Pharmaceuticals and Innodata. Skilled in SEO and passionate about creating informative and engaging medical conten...View More

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