Cardiovascular mortality following liver transplantation: predictors and temporal trends over 30 years

Anoop N. Koshy, Paul J. Gow, Hui Chen Han, Andrew W. Teh, Robert Jones, Adam Testro, Han S. Lim, Geoffrey McCaughan, Gary P. Jeffrey, Michael Crawford, Graeme Macdonald, Jonathan Fawcett, Alan Wigg, John W.C. Chen, Edward J. Gane, Stephen R. Munn, David J. Clark, Matias B. Yudi, Omar Farouque

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


AIMS: There has been significant evolution in operative and post-transplant therapies following liver transplantation (LT). We sought to study their impact on cardiovascular (CV) mortality, particularly in the longer term. METHODS AND RESULTS: A retrospective cohort study was conducted of all adult LTs in Australia and New Zealand across three 11-year eras from 1985 to assess prevalence, modes, and predictors of early (≤30 days) and late (>30 days) CV mortality. A total of 4265 patients were followed-up for 37 409 person-years. Overall, 1328 patients died, and CV mortality accounted for 228 (17.2%) deaths. Both early and late CV mortality fell significantly across the eras (P < 0.001). However, CV aetiologies were consistently the leading cause of early mortality and accounted for ∼40% of early deaths in the contemporary era. Cardiovascular deaths occurred significantly later than non-cardiac aetiologies (8.8 vs. 5.2 years, P < 0.001). On multivariable Cox regression, coronary artery disease [hazard ratio (HR) 4.6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.2-21.6; P = 0.04] and era of transplantation (HR 0.44; 95% CI 0.28-0.70; P = 0.01) were predictors of early CV mortality, while advancing age (HR 1.05, 95% CI 1.02-1.10; P = 0.005) was an independent predictors of late CV mortality. Most common modes of CV death were cardiac arrest, cerebrovascular events, and myocardial infarction. CONCLUSION: Despite reductions in CV mortality post-LT over 30 years, they still account for a substantial proportion of early and late deaths. The late occurrence of CV deaths highlights the importance of longitudinal follow-up to study the efficacy of targeted risk-reduction strategies in this unique patient population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)243-253
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean heart journal. Quality of care & clinical outcomes
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2020


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