Early post-liver transplantation infections and their effect on long-term survival

Yaara Leibovici-Weissman*, Noa Anchel, Eviatar Nesher, Moshe Leshno, Amir Shlomai

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Infections post-liver transplantation are major drivers for morbidity and mortality. However, the impact of infections within 180 days post-liver transplantation on long-term survival is not clear. Methods: We present a retrospective cohort of 317 liver transplant patients for whom all infectious episodes were prospectively collected during a mean follow-up of 4.4 years. Results: A total of 143/317 (45%) of patients suffered from any infectious episode during the first 6 months following liver transplantation. Patients with surgical site infections have a reduced survival compared to those with no infection (HR 0.33, 95% CI 0.172-0.636, P =.001), whereas infections from other sources, including pneumonia, UTI, and line-related infections, were not associated with increased mortality. Furthermore, even though the presence of any infection within 30 days or 6 months post-transplantation did not affect survival, more than a single infectious episode per patient was significantly associated with increased mortality (HR 1.70, CI 1.12-2.60, P =.013). In a multivariate analysis, the number of infectious episodes remained statistically significant (HR 1.58, 95% CI 1.03-2.43, P =.035) upon adjustment for other major variables associated with comorbidities and infection risk. Conclusions: Surgical site infections and the number of infectious episodes within 180 days post-liver transplantation are major determinants of long-term survival among these patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere13673
JournalTransplant Infectious Disease
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2021


  • infections
  • liver transplantation
  • postoperative complications
  • survival rate


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