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Pregnancy outcomes in women with liver transplants: systematic review and meta-analysis

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Jess Dyson, Steven White


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© 2020 International Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary Association Inc. Background: Despite increasing reports of pregnancy in liver transplant recipients, questions remain about the impact of transplantation in pregnancy. Methods: This systematic review was performed according to PRISMA guidelines and eligible studies were identified through a search of PubMed, Scopus and Cochrane CENTRAL databases up to 26th December 2019 for studies reporting pregnancy with liver transplant. A meta-analysis was conducted with the use of random-effects modelling and prospectively registered with the PROSPERO database. Results: Of 1239 unique studies, 28 met inclusion criteria, representing 1496 pregnancies in 1073 liver transplant recipients. The live-birth rate was 85.6% (CI95%: 80.5%–90.7%). The rate of other pregnancy outcomes was as follows: induced abortions (5.7%), miscarriages (7.8%) and stillbirths (3.3%). Pooled rates of obstetric complications were hypertension (18.2%), pre-eclampsia (12.8%) and gestational diabetes (7.0%). Pooled rates of delivery outcomes for caesarean section (C-section) and pre-term birth were 42.2% and 27.8%, respectively. Conclusion: In conclusion, live birth outcomes are good among liver transplant recipients and this favourable trend is consistent at an international level. However, special attention should be given to obstetric complications such as hypertension, pre-eclampsia, and preterm delivery. The high incidence of these complications supports the high-risk classification of post-liver transplant pregnancies and it is necessary for a multidisciplinary team to be involved in the monitoring and counselling of liver transplant recipients both before and during pregnancy. Whilst majority data originate from institutions from high-income countries, data from low-middle income countries (LMIC) are needed owing to rising rates of liver transplantation in LMIC.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Marson EJ, Kamarajah SK, Dyson JK, White SA

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: HPB

Year: 2020

Volume: 22

Issue: 8

Pages: 1102-1111

Print publication date: 01/08/2020

Online publication date: 04/07/2020

Acceptance date: 04/05/2020

ISSN (print): 1365-182X

ISSN (electronic): 1477-2574

Publisher: Elsevier B.V.


DOI: 10.1016/j.hpb.2020.05.001