Assessment of the nutritional status of patients before, one, and three months after liver transplantation: A multi-center Longitudinal study
Background: Nutrition management is an important pre-operative and post-operative challenge in liver transplantation. Preoperative malnutrition is associated with increased length of intensive care unit (ICU) stay, mortality, and length of hospital stay in liver transplant patients. This study aimed to evaluate the nutritional status of patients before and after liver transplantation and post-transplant complications. Method: This longitudinal study was conducted on liver transplant patients in Montaserieh Hospital, Mashhad and Firoozgar Hospital, Tehran from May 2021 to January 2022. Demographic characteristics, Subjective Global Assessment (SGA) standard questionnaire, anthropometric indices, laboratory analyses, and 3-day food records were collected before, one, and three months after transplantation. Results: Thirty-nine patients with a mean age of 48.4 ± 14.2 were evaluated. Prevalence of severe malnutrition was 43.6% (56.3% women and 34.8% men) before transplantation. Body mass index (BMI), body weight, lean mass, total body water, and total serum protein significantly decreased after transplantation compared to before transplantation (P <0.001). One month after transplantation, 54% of the patients lost more than 10% of their weight. Energy intake increased significantly after transplantation (P <0.001). A significant relationship was observed between BMI (P=0.005) and metabolic complications and between Arm Muscle Circumference and renal complications (P=0.003) after transplantation. A cut-off point of 4.6 was determined for the phase angle in terms of SGA three months after transplantation. Conclusion: Malnutrition, weight loss, and nutritional problems were common in liver transplantation patients. Screening for nutritional status is necessary in these patients to treat or prevent malnutrition-related complications.