Sally Condon, MD1, Laura Smart, MD2, Craig McClain, MD1
1University of Louisville, Louisville, KY; 2University of Louisville Hospital, Louisville, KY
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a growing cause of liver disease in the USA and throughout the rest of the world and is predicted to soon become the leading indication for liver transplantation. NAFLD exists on a spectrum from hepatic steatosis to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) to cirrhosis. It is closely related to metabolic syndrome and insulin resistance. A lesser known cause of hepatic steatosis is islet cell allotransplantation and autotransplantation, which are experimental treatments for Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus and FDA- approved treatment for patients with chronic pancreatitis who have undergone pancreatectomy, respectively. In this case, we present the first case of post-islet cell transplantation hepatic steatosis progressing to cirrhosis.
The patient is a 27 year old female with a history of chronic pancreatitis secondary to cystic fibrosis, status-post total pancreatectomy and islet cell autotransplantation, complicated by development of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. Her NASH was treated with probiotics and vitamin E supplementation. Eight years after her islet cell transplant, she was hospitalized for nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. A CT scan showed that she had developed severe, diffuse hepatic steatosis. Her ALP and AST were mildly elevated. ALT and total bilirubin were normal. She had facial and pedal edema, but no other stigmata of cirrhosis. She underwent a liver biopsy which showed bridging fibrosis and a small regenerative nodule with steatohepatitis. It was with these findings that she was diagnosed with cirrhosis.
Hepatic steatosis has been reported with a prevalence of 20-40% of patients following islet cell transplantation. These reports have not been associated with any long term liver or graft survival outcomes. The usual onset of histological findings in one study was approximately 3 years after transplant, and some of these cases resolved over time. These reported cases did not have any changes in total bilirubin, ALP, AST, or ALT. Hepatic steatosis from islet transplantation is thought to develop due to the paracrine effect of localized hyperinsulinemia and fatty acid infiltration from the islet cells, which are inserted into the portal vein and taken to the liver during transplant. To our knowledge, this is the only reported case in which post-islet cell transplantation hepatic steatosis progressed to NASH cirrhosis along with abnormal liver biomarkers.
Citation: Sally Condon, MD; Laura Smart, MD; Craig McClain, MD. P1625 - PROGRESSION OF POST-ISLET CELL TRANSPLANTATION HEPATIC STEATOSIS TO CIRRHOSIS: A RARE COMPLICATION OF A COMMON FINDING. Program No. P1625. ACG 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting Abstracts. San Antonio, Texas: American College of Gastroenterology.