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Liver transplant eligibility: controversial candidate selection

For patients with end-stage liver disease, transplantation is the only treatment option to extend life, however because of the short supply of donated liver, candidate selection for liver transplantation presents challenging ethical issues that require balancing the principles of justice and utility.

A recent anonymous study among U.S. transplant providers shows that chances to get a transplant are limited for candidates with history of alcohol and marijuana abuse, HIV status, obesity, psychiatric diagnoses, advanced age or for those who are incarcerated.

National survey of provider opinions on controversial characteristics of liver transplant candidates“, by Katharine Secunda, Elisa J. Gordon, Min W. Sohn, Laura A. Shinkunas, Lauris C. Kaldjian, Michael D. VoigtJosh Levitsky is published in the April issue of Liver Transplantation, a journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and the International Liver Transplantation Society.