Background: Sarcopenia is associated with a worst prognosis in cirrhotic patients after liver transplantation (LT). As patients gain weight and sarcopenia remains after LT, sarcopenic obesity (SO) develops. Metabolic syndrome (MS), a cluster of factors that increase the risk of heart disease and diabetes, is caused by weight gain. There are limited data about the influence of SO and MS in LT recipients.
Purpose: The goal of this study was to examine the impact of SO and MS on outcome after LT.
Method: In total, 94 cirrhotic patients who underwent LT at the CHUM – Liver Unit were included. Sarcopenia was assessed at the third lumbar level vertebrae using a CT-scan. Obesity was determined using BMI whereas MS was diagnosed using the presence of ³3 modified NCEP ATP III criteria. The prognostic factors were collected 6 months before and during 1 year after LT through medical records and included number of complications, episodes of infections, length of stay, and frequency of readmissions.
Result(s): Most of the patients ( 70%) were not obese before LT. Approximately 20% of the patients developed obesity after LT. Among patients who were obese before LT, 40% of the patients remained obese after LT. SO affected 10% and less of the patients before and after LT. Among patients with MS before LT (64%), 40% of them was still affected after LT. Among patients who were not affected by MS before LT, 38% developed MS after LT and one patient remained not affected after LT. Prognostic factors were worst in patients with SO and MS before and after LT.
Conclusion(s): SO affected a small proportion of patients while MS was prevalent before and after LT. Nevertheless, these conditions were associated with worst prognosis. Strategies to manage SO and MS could help to improve recovery in patients who have undergone LT.