Hepatopulmonary syndrome in children - Is conventional liver transplantation always needed?

Asha D. Willis, Tamir A. Miloh, Ronen Arnon, Kishore R. Iyer, Frederick J. Suchy, Nanda Kerkar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Background: Hepatopulmonary syndrome (HPS) is the association of liver disease, hypoxemia, and intrapulmonary vascular dilatations. There are little data on the management of HPS in children other than conventional orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT). Aims: To describe the patient characteristics, mode of diagnosis, treatment, and outcomes of children with HPS at our center. Methods: Retrospective review of patients diagnosed with HPS between 1997 and 2007 after IRB approval. Results: There were 10 patients, six females; median age at diagnosis of HPS was 12yr. Six with cirrhosis underwent OLT and had subsequent resolution of HPS and are stable at last follow-up. Of the remaining four, two had cirrhosis. HPS resolved without conventional OLT in the following four patients: hepatitis C after antiviral treatment, biliary atresia with portal hypertension after transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunting, Abernethy syndrome after auxiliary partial OLT, and in a child with splenic vein thrombosis after splenectomy. Conclusions: Our series shows resolution of HPS in all patients and 100% survival after conventional OLT. Four children had resolution of HPS after surgical or medical treatments other than conventional OLT. Careful review of clinical status and underlying pathophysiology and anatomy at diagnosis of HPS should inform treatment decisions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)849-855
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Transplantation
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Hepatopulmonary
  • Management
  • Pediatric
  • Transplant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation


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