Living-donor Liver Transplant: A New Option for Paediatric Liver Disease in UAE

MAZARIEGOS_GEORGE_MD_TTS_20120613_Dubai, 4 February 2016 – Dr. George V. Mazariegos, Chief of Paediatric Transplantation of Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, recommends living-donor transplant to treat children with liver diseases. Dr. Mazariegos will be presenting at the 3rd Arab Paediatric Medical Congress in Dubai this February. During the Congress, he will share with other paediatricians the indications for transplant in metabolic and chronic liver disease in children.

Liver disease is a common illness among thousands of children, including infants, worldwide. While there are no official reports on how many children are affected with liver disease in the UAE, the country has a death rate of 10.16 per 100,000 population due to liver disease in 2014, according to World Health Organization. The first liver transplant was reported to be carried out in the country in 2007 to a 46-year old Indian entrepreneur, but there are no further reports about children with liver disease being treated with this type of surgery. Last December 2015, one case of paediatric liver transplant has been reported, but the operation was performed in Taiwan. Also, there are only two facilities authorised to perform organ transplants in UAE, which are Dubai Hospital and Shaikh Khalifa Medical City in Abu Dhabi.

Dr. Mazariegos will share in his presentation the advantages of living-donor liver transplantation in metabolic and chronic liver disease as a new option for children. However, there are short and long-term outcomes after live donor transplantation as well as medical and surgical complications after liver transplant in children. A detailed discussion on these effects and how to minimise these complications will be tackled by Dr. Mazariegos at the Congress taking place on 25 to 27 February 2016 at JW Marriott Dubai, UAE.

Dr. Mazariegos serves as the Chief of Paediatric at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, a leading centre for paediatric living-donor liver transplantation in the US which has a three-year survival rate for liver transplants of 96 percent compared to the national average of 90 percent. The hospital has performed a total of 89 living-donor liver transplants from programme inception through March 2013. (Source: The Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC will be sponsoring the 3rd Arab Paediatric Medical Congress.

The Congress, now on its third year, is an initiative by Maarefeh Management with the support of the Executive Board of Health Ministers’ Council for GCC States, Dubai Healthcare City, and the Saudi Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition (SASPGHAN).

The two-day congress will gather regional and international experts who will discuss and deliberate on various aspects of children’s health such as policies and strategies, as well as the recent developments in managing disorders in children in different areas such as cardiology, respiratory, neurology, psychiatry, and infectious, metabolic and rare diseases. A ‘Rare Diseases Symposium’ will also be featured on the first day of the Congress to commemorate the Rare Disease Day on February 29. Experts from Latifa Hospital, Tawam Hospital, and UAE University will also be present at the symposium to discuss the latest advances in genetic and rare disorders.

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