3 years ago

The Rise of the Opioid Epidemic and Hepatitis C Positive Organs: A New Era in Liver Transplantation.

Trotter, Gonzalez
The use of hepatitis C virus (HCV) positive organs in liver transplantation has increased in the era of direct-acting antiviral therapy. A rising demand for organs, the ability to effectively treat HCV infection in the transplant setting, and an unprecedented increase in HCV positive donors have all contributed to this trend. A recent abrupt rise in opioid use in the US has resulted in a surge of injection drug use, transmission of HCV, and opioid-related overdose deaths. Geographic areas most affected by the opioid epidemic have experienced a rapid increase in recovery and utilization of HCV positive donor organs, in which the proportion of deceased donor liver transplants in the US from donors who are HCV positive has increased nearly two-fold within the last three years. The prospect of expanding the organ donor pool with HCV positive donors and achieving acceptable post-transplant outcomes has generated much interest in the areas of liver, kidney, and thoracic transplantation, including the potential for transplanting organs from HCV positive donors into HCV negative recipients. Developing strategies to ensure appropriate selection of potential recipients of HCV positive organs, initiating timely antiviral therapy, and defining associated risks will be critical in achieving optimal post-transplant outcomes in this setting. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1002/hep.29572

DOI: 10.1002/hep.29572

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