The need for blood transfusion in cirrhotic liver resection is difficult to determine because of inaccurate estimation of operative blood loss. Moreover, blood transfusion is detrimental to cirrhotic patients.
To investigate the predictors and limitations of hepatectomy without blood transfusion for cirrhotic patients.
University hospital, a tertiary referral center.
A consecutive 163 cirrhotic patients underwent resection for liver tumor(s) under a policy of restrictive blood transfusion.
Estimated blood losses and clinicopathological features of patients who received and those who did not receive a blood transfusion were compared.
Main Outcome Measures
Estimated operative blood losses, preoperative assessments, and operative procedures.
There were 48 patients in the group who received a blood transfusion, with 1275±650 mL (mean±SE) of blood transfused, and 115 patients in the group who did not receive a blood transfusion. From discriminant analysis, the cutoff value of estimated blood loss for blood transfusion was 1685 mL. Tumor size and site of hepatectomy were found to be independent variables influencing blood transfusion under logistic regression analysis.
Most cirrhotic patients tolerate hepatectomy without blood transfusion when the estimated operative blood loss is less than 1600 mL. Hepatectomy can be performed in cirrhotic patients without blood transfusion if the tumor is small (<5 cm), and/or the resection area is confined to Couinaud segments II, III, and VI. In this study, the largest amount of estimated blood loss in cirrhotic liver resection without blood transfusion was 2350 mL, but the uppermost limit remains to be determined.