Increasing heart transplant donor pool by liberalization of size matching

Luise Holzhauser, Teruhiko Imamura, Nikhil Bassi, Takeo Fujino, Daisuke Nitta, Anthony J. Kanelidis, Nikhil Narang, Gene Kim, Jayant Raikhelkar, Catherine Murks, David Onsager, Tae Song, Takeyoshi Ota, Valluvan Jeevanandam, Gabriel Sayer, Nir Uriel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: The heart transplant (HT) guidelines recommendation to match recipient and donors within 30% of body weight lacks a strong evidence base and is not well established in patients bridged to transplant with left ventricular assist devices (LVAD). In light of the scarcity of donor hearts, we investigated the effect of size mismatch on hemodynamics, one-year survival and length of stay (LOS) following HT. METHODS: Single-center retrospective analysis of consecutive HT patients from April 2007 to September 2017. Recipients were divided into 3 cohorts based on donor-to-recipient weight ratio (DRWR): (1) undersized (<0.7), (2) size-matched, (0.7–1.3); (3) oversized (>1.3). RESULTS: 288 consecutive patients were identified (mean age 53 ± 11 years; 76% male), 46 were undersized (0.61 ± 0.05), 210 size-matched (0.94 ± 0.16), and 32 oversized (1.65 ± 0.38). There was no significant difference in donor left ventricular end diastolic diameter (LVEDD) between the 3 groups (p = 0.11). The donor/recipient (D/R) predicted heart mass (PHM) was lowest in the undersized group (0.92 ± 0.13). There were no significant differences in 1-year survival in the overall and LVAD cohort (p = 0.65 and 0.59, respectively). Neither donor LVEDD nor D/R PHM differed among survivors or non-survivors. LOS was longer in the undersized group than the size-matched cohort (p = 0.004). The undersized group had hearts with the highest filling pressures and lowest cardiac index at 1 week among the remaining groups (p = 0.009, 0.017, and p = 0.05, respectively). There were no clinically significant differences in hemodynamics at 1 or 6 months. CONCLUSIONS: HT undersizing affects hemodynamics early but not later in the course and does not impact 1-year survival. The liberalization of size matching may increase the HT donor pool significantly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1197-1205
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Heart and Lung Transplantation
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Transplantation


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