Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation

What's New

  • February 24, 2014

    Dr. Kato to Receive 2014 Nobility in Science Award

    The Sarcoma Foundation of America will award Tomoaki Kato, MD its 2014 Nobility in Science Award at its 12th SFA Annual Gala, "Finding the Cure in Our Time-Generating Hope" on Monday, May 5, 2014.

    The Nobility in Science Award honors an individual who has made outstanding advancements in the areas of sarcoma research and treatment. The foundation chose Dr. Kato in recognition of his achievements in "ex vivo" transplant surgery, which entails the removal and re-implantation of as many as six abdominal organs. In an 18-hour surgery that was featured on ABC's NY Med, Dr. Kato saved the life of one of the foundation's Board Members by removing her abdominal organs, clearing them of the sarcoma, and replacing them back into her body.

  • First Fully Laparoscopic Adult-to-Adult Liver Donation Saves Daughter's Life
    Westfield NJ, December 2013

    First Fully Laparoscopic Adult-to-Adult Liver Donation Saves Daughter's Life

    Together with her extended family, 14-year-old liver transplant recipient Elle Haley enjoyed an extra special celebration of the holidays and the marriage of her grandparents.

    The year before, she received a portion of her father's liver in what would be a groundbreaking procedure: Benjamin Samstein, MD, Surgical Director of the Living Donor Liver Transplant Program at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center, removed the left lobe of Drew Haley's liver using an entirely laparoscopic approach. NYP/Columbia has been performing fully laparoscopic living donor transplantation when smaller portions of the liver were needed for younger children, but this was the first case in which a large segment - in this case Drew Haley's entire left lobe - was removed fully laparoscopically. The fully laparoscopic adult-to-adult surgery was published in the American Journal of Transplantation in September 2013 along with two similar cases in Europe, the first in the world.

    Read more in the New Jersey Star Ledger here.

  • November 2012

    Liver transplant team makes sure 4-year old girl receives needed transplant in the midst of Hurricane Sandy

    Four-year old Natalia Dreeland received the best possible news — a rare matched liver was available for her much-needed transplant — but at the worst possible time. With Hurricane Sandy bearing down on NJ and NY that very day, the chances of being able to transport that liver from Nevada to NY grew slimmer with each passing hour. Yet Natalia's transplant team, transplant coordinators, and heroic pilots did not give up until the donor liver arrived safely at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia. Three weeks later, Natalia is recovering and doing well.
    Read the full story in the New York Times.

  • November 2012

    New Hepatitis C Treatment Therapies at Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation

    Listen to our talk on Columbia Surgery Blog Talk Radio to chat with Hepatologist Elizabeth Verna, MD, MS, Assistant Professor of Medicine at NYP/Columbia's Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation and Robert S. Brown Jr., MD, MPH, Director of the Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation. Speak to our experts about these new and exciting treatment options and learn more about Hepatitis C and the triple viral therapy medications. Dr. Verna and Dr. Brown will answer your questions live, such as:

    • Who would be a good candidate for this new treatment?
    • How does the triple viral therapy medications work together to better target the Hepatitis C infection?
    • What is triple viral therapy's role in liver transplantation?

    Download Transcript PDF File

  • Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation Receives UNOS Silver Award, Lung program wins Bronze
    October 4, 2012

    Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation Receives UNOS Silver Award, Lung program wins Bronze

    The Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation (CLDT) at NYP/Columbia received a Silver Medal of Honor for exceeding national standards for organ donation. The award, which reflects transplants done between April 1, 2010, through March 31, 2012, was presented by the Department of Health and Human Services at the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) annual National Learning Congress in Grapevine TX. The award recognizes CLDT's outstanding outcomes, including its high rate of transplantation and low mortality rate among patients on the waitlist for a donor organ.

    The CLDT is only one of five liver transplant programs in the US to win a silver award in this category and the only program in NYC to have done so. In related news, the Lung Transplant program at NYP/Columbia won a bronze award, also for its commendable performance in organ donation.

    Read more.


  • Sep 27, 2012

    Health and Education for Asian Livers (H+EAL)

    Outreach Program Educates New York Immigrants about Liver Disease

    Three specialists from the Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation (CLDT) at NYP/Columbia spoke at a special event for the Asian community in Flushing, NY May 7, 2012. Between 300 and 400 people attended the event, titled Prevention and Treatment of Liver Diseases for Asians, which was hosted by Asia Bank. The presentation was given to raise awareness about liver diseases and to encourage Asian immigrants to seek treatment.

    Read more.


  • July 2012

    NYPH ranked #1 hospital in NY City, # 7 in nation, in US News & World Report Survey

    NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital is the best hospital in the metropolitan New York area, and ranks seventh in the nation, according to the 23rd annual U.S. News & World Report annual survey, published July 17, 2012. This marks the 13th year that NYPH was included in the report's Honor Roll.

    Of the 4793 hospitals included in the survey, 3% rank highly in just one specialty. NYPH earned national ranking in 23 specialties, including nine pediatric and 14 adult specialties. It was also ranked high-performing in two other areas of care. Rankings of the hospitals are based on criteria including survival rates, safety measures, nurse-to-patient ratios, and other factors.

    The 2012-2013 report comes one week after NYPH was featured in the debut of NY Med, an eight-part documentary series filmed inside the hospital for one year.

    See the overview of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital in the July 17, 2012 US News & World Report here.

  • July 2012

    Hear about how Dr. Tomoaki Kato began his career in Liver Transplant

  • Reflections of a Living Liver Donor

    Reflections of a Living Liver Donor

    By Susanne Mullman

    In July 2009, I was a liver donor to my 21 year old daughter, Jen, whose liver failed due to autoimmune hepatitis. I first wrote about the experience in December 2009. Though I accurately captured the emotion and the gratitude I felt at the time, I glossed over many aspects of the journey. Our lives had not yet gotten back to normal, and although Jen would return to school in a few weeks, part of me was still holding my breath, overwhelmed by all we had been through and a little fearful of the future. Now, with the passage of time and watching Jen resume her life in continued good health, it is easier to write the story.

    Living donor liver transplants help all kinds of people. Read stories about a few of them. PDF File

  • April 13, 2012

    Dr. Tomoaki Kato and Dr. Emile Bacha lead dramatic surgical procedure to save young girls life

  • March 21, 2011

    Living Donor Liver Transplantation May Allow Children to Withdraw from Anti-rejection Drugs

    A majority of children who had received liver transplants from their parents were able to stop anti-rejection (immunosuppressant) medication in an encouraging study at three transplant centers.

    Read more..


  • March 14, 2011

    New Cocktail Boosts Recovery from Hepatitis C

    For someone with liver disease, a cocktail is normally a forbidden luxury. But in some cases, it may be just what the doctor ordered. Two recently approved medications are now being combined with traditional treatments to form a powerful new drug cocktail, improving the outcomes among patients with this challenging disease.

    Read more.



  • November 15, 2011

    Stamford CT woman gives husband the gift of life

    When Brad Shwidock needed a liver transplant due to primary sclerosing cholangitis, his wife, Carol, was not only eager to donate, but was a good match. The successful living donor transplantation took place at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia September 13, 2011.

    Read the story reported by the couple's local paper, The Hour Online, here.

  • November 10, 2011

    Challenges in Liver Transplantation: Allocation of Donor Organs

    The November 10, 2011 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine features an editorial by Robert S. Brown, Jr., MD, MPH, Director of the Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation, titled Transplantation for Alcoholic Hepatitis — Time to Rethink the 6-Month "Rule."

    In this editorial, Dr. Brown addresses the difficult questions surrounding how to fairly allocate donor organs, which are in far shorter supply than their demand. In the case of patients with alcoholic hepatitis, current guidelines exclude such patients from the liver transplant waiting list unless they have successfully abstained from alcohol for at least six months. Yet as Dr. Brown points out, many die before this required, albeit arbitrary, window elapses. And a new study indicates that if they are permitted to receive liver transplants, such patients may do at least as as well as, if not better than, some other patients who receive transplants far more often.

    As Dr. Brown explains in this editorial, the typical recidivism rate among alcoholics is approximately 30%. Yet organs are regularly allocated to patients with hepatitis C, who have a 100% disease recurrence rate, and a much higher rate of graft failure than those with alcoholic hepatitis, at five years. A study by Mathurin et al in this issue found that carefully selected patients with alcoholic hepatitis experienced a 77% survival rate after liver transplantation at six months, and a recidivism rate of 11.5%. Based on these encouraging results, Dr. Brown writes, "...this study highlights the need to rethink our approach to transplantation for alcoholic liver disease, including applying better rules for selecting patients who are at low risk for recidivism that can be applied in a uniform and fair way."

    Read the full editorial at the New England Medicine Journal of Medicine here.

  • September, 2011

    Preventing Liver Cancer

    Could your favorite foods be causing liver cancer? Dr. Lorna Dove joins Dr. Oz, as they discuss the risk factors for liver cancer, such as chronic alcohol consumption, as well as some solutions.


  • Join Team Gratitude in Fighting Liver Disease: Walk in the American Liver Foundation Liver Life Walk on June 5
    Join Team Gratitude in Fighting Liver Disease: Walk in the American Liver Foundation Liver Life Walk on June 5
    June, 2011

    Join Team Gratitude in Fighting Liver Disease: Walk in the American Liver Foundation Liver Life Walk on June 5

    Are you, a family member, or a friend affected by liver disease? Help make a difference by walking with NewYork-Presbyterian's Team Gratitude this spring.

    The annual American Liver Foundation NYC Liver Life Walk will be held Sunday, June 5, 2011 in Battery Park, NY.

    Team Gratitude includes patients with liver disease, liver transplant donors and recipients, friends, family members, physicians, and others connected through NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital Center for Liver Disease & Transplantation. Celebrating its tenth year, the team is united in its commitment to fight liver disease. As part of that commitment, members walk for many reasons: to raise awareness about liver disease, to improve prevention of liver disease by raising funds for the American Liver Foundation; to walk in memory of a loved one; to represent the 30 million Americans fighting liver disease today; and to walk in gratitude towards life.

    To join Team Gratitude at the NYC Walk, go to the Team Gratitude team web page. Scroll down the page to see the list of team members, and select the "Join Team" link (at the top of the list of team members). Then, follow the instructions to register for the ALF Liver Life Walk as a part of Team Gratitude.

    If you would like to support Team Gratitude in other towns, a few of the members will be participating in these ALF walks:

    • May 22, 2011: Eisenhower Park, NY.
    • June 12, 2011: Verona Park, NJ.

    For information about Team Gratitude, contact Jessica Chipkin, at jessica.chipkin@gmail.com

    For information about the American Liver Foundation and/or the Liver Life Walk, please contact ALF's Event Manager, Dilber Koyuncu, at Dkoyuncu@liverfoundation.org or 212.943.1059.

  • Liver
    March 17, 2011

    CLDT Named Top Center for Hepatitis B

    Newsmax online magazine listed NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center as one of the top ten treatment centers in the U.S. for hepatitis B. In its review, Newsmax said "The hospital has remarkable statistics on curing patients with hepatitis B. The Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation at the center is one of the best of its kind in the U.S."

    Read the story here.

  • November 2010

    NYP/Columbia Patients and Surgeons Run NYC Marathon

    November 7, 2010: Three NewYork-Presbyterian patients ran in the New York City Marathon with surgeons and staff who saved their lives. Jessica Chipkin, along with multiple members of the liver transplant team, ran for the second time since her liver transplant in 2005, when her liver failed due to Wilson's disease. Another patient from the hospital was Benjamin Carey, who underwent surgery for an aortic root aneurysm exactly one year prior to this year's marathon, who ran with his heart surgeon, Allan Stewart, MD. Timothy Sweeney, who had double lung transplant surgery just one year ago, ran with his transplant surgeon, Joshua Sonett, MD.

  • September 2010

    Tomoaki Kato, MD, Robert Brown, MD, and Jean Emond, MD are featured in Innovations in Liver Transplantation, an online Information TV program. They discuss the role of liver transplantation in treating adults with hepatatis C and liver cancer, and children with biliary atresia and other liver diseases. Through interviews and patient profiles, the program clearly explains advances such as living donor liver transplantation and laparoscopic donor surgery.

  • July 2010

    Video: Story of a Father-Son Living Donor Liver Transplant

    Charles Cascio, Jr. and his father, Charles Cascio, Sr. are both patients at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital's Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation (CLDT) in New York City. Charles Jr. donated a portion of his liver to his father during a living donor living transplant (LDLT) procedure. Both father and son have fully recovered. Benjamin Samstein, MD, performed Charles Jr.'s donor surgery. James Guarrera, MD, performed liver transplant surgery on his father. Watch their story in five parts.

  • June 2010

    Dr. Kato Performs Successful Liver Transplant on two-Month-Old Infant

    In February, 2010, Dr. Kato led a surgical team in a lifesaving liver transplant on a two-month-old New York infant with advanced liver failure. One of the smallest babies ever to successfully receive a liver transplant, the child weighed 4 pounds at the time of the surgery. In the weeks after being born 10 weeks premature on December 3, 2010, the patient was referred to NewYork-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center where she was diagnosed with an irreversible liver injury of unknown origin. Cared for in the neonatal intensive care unit, she was on a ventilator and had dangerous fluid buildup in her abdomen and difficulty feeding. She was on the organ waitlist for two weeks before a replacement organ became available. Read more about the surgery and the child's recovery. The story was covered in the New York Daily News.

  • June 2010

    Dr. Kato Featured in 2010 NY Magazine Best Doctors Issue

    The June 6, 2010 New York magazine Best Doctors issue included a profile of Tomoaki Kato, MD, featuring a multi-organ auto transplant he led to rid a 63- year-old woman of a baseball-sized leiomyosarcoma tumor on her abdominal aorta. The tumor was also wrapped around two other major arteries. The team temporarily removed the abdominal organs. In removing the tumor they excised four inches of vena cava and three inches of aorta, replacing the vessel tissue with grafts. The operation required seven surgeons and two anesthesiologists; the patient went home after three weeks in the hospital.

  • June 2010

    Dr. Samstein and Laparoscopic Hepatectomy Featured on National TV

    Dr. Benjamin Samstein, a pioneer in minimally invasive liver donor surgery (hepatectomy), appeared on an ABC News Healthfirst segment on May 27, 2010. The segment profiled a father who donated a portion of his liver to his young child, who suffered from liver failure. Until recently, living donor hepatectomy involved a 25 centimeter incision extending from chest to navel. Newly introduced minimally invasive donor surgery involves several 1-inch incisions instead. The result is much less pain and recovery time for the donor. The procedure is a boon for living liver donors, who are often a parent donating a portion of their liver to their child—a parent who must care for the child immediately after surgery. The story was also covered nationally on CBS News.

  • March 2010

    Video: The CLDT's Benjamin Samstein, MD, discusses surgery for liver cancer

    Dr. Samstein discusses "resection" (removing the diseased part of the liver), how much of the liver can be safely removed, and what challenges faces surgeons operating on the liver.

  • February 2010

    Dr. Kato and Orthotopic Liver Transplantation Profiled in NYT

    The February 22, 2010 New York Times published an article about auxiliary partial orthotopic liver transplantation, in which a portion of a liver is transplanted into the body of a patient with liver failure, usually a child, and the patient's own (native) liver is retained in place. The transplanted liver supports the patient until the native liver recovers, and immune-suppressing drugs to protect the transplant from the patient's immune system are administered. Once the native liver recovers, immunosuppression is stopped and the transplant liver is attacked and absorbed by the immune system. The great benefit of the procedure is that the patient must only take immunosuppressant drugs until their own liver recovers, although not all cases of acute liver failure do recover, and those patients rely on their transplanted liver and require immunosuppression for life.

    The Times article focused on the case of NYPH/Columbia Patient Jonathan Nuņez, whose liver failed at when he was eight months old. Tomoaki Kato, MD, then at University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital, performed auxiliary partial orthotopic liver transplantation surgery on Jonathan in 2006. Jonathan is now a healthy four-year-old, who is immunosuppressant free. Dr. Kato, who came to Columbia's Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation in 2008, was highlighted in the article as one of the few surgeons who perform the lengthy and complex procedure.

  • February 2010

    Exclusively at NewYork-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital

    Laparoscopic Approach Promises Dramatically Improved Recovery for the Organ Donor — Typically, a Parent Donating to Their Child

    The laparoscopic liver retrieval is offered by Dr. Benjamin Samstein, Surgical Director of the Living Donor Liver Transplant Program, who first learned the technique from Daniel Cherqui of Hôpital Henri Mondor, Paris. Standard pediatric liver implantation is led by Dr. Tomoaki Kato, Surgical Director, Liver and Gastrointestinal Transplantation. The new surgical advance represents the latest chapter in a history of innovations in living organ donation by NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia surgeons. Dr. Jean Emond, chief of transplantation, was a key member of the team that performed the first pediatric living donor liver transplantation in North America in 1989 while at the University of Chicago Medical Center. Dr. Lloyd Ratner, director of renal and pancreatic transplantation, performed the nation's first adult-to-adult laparoscopic living donor kidney transplant in 1995 while at Johns Hopkins Medical Center. Today more than half of kidney transplants are done with a living donor, and 80 percent of these are retrieved laparoscopically.

    Read more about living donor liver retrieval and living organ transplantation at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center.

  • February 2010

    Dr. James Guarrera Is PI in First-of-Its-Kind Liver Preservation Study

    Machine Perfusion Outperforms Standard Cold-Storage Liver Preservation

    Preserving organs on ice prior to transplantation, an approach known as cold storage or CS, has been the standard practice in liver transplant for 20 years. Now there is new evidence that a technique called hypothermic machine perfusion (HMP) may offer an improvement, according to the first-ever study comparing the impact of the two techniques on transplant outcomes. The phase I study was carried out by Dr. James Guarrera and his colleagues at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center. Unlike cold storage, which Dr. Guarrera describes as a static technique, HMP dynamically simulates "aliveness" by providing a continuous flow of oxygen and key nutrients to the liver while diluting and removing toxins and waste products.

  • January 2010

    Brooklyn Woman on Brink of Death Thrives After Five Transplants

    At the turn of the 2010 New Year, Fox News and the New York Daily News reported on the promising recovery of a patient who received an unprecedented five-organ transplant in May 2009.
    The procedure was performed by a Columbia surgical team headed by Dr. Tomoaki Kato. The 22-year-old patient, Kristin Molini, was near death from a rare medical condition known as intestinal dysmotility when she received a new liver, stomach, pancreas, and large and small intestines in a 13-hour operation. The Columbia surgical team included three surgeons, two anesthesiologists, and four nurses. According to the article, only 300 such surgeries have been performed worldwide since the 1980s. "It's still a very uncommon surgery," said Dr. Kato, "This is considered very high-risk." Media coverage for the multiple transplant included Fox News (December 31, 2009) and the New York Daily News (January 1, 2010).

  • A lemon-sized tumor, attached to a patient's main arteries and wedged behind several or gans, was considered inoperable by other institutions.
    November 2009

    Multi-Organ Autotransplantation

    Transplant surgeons at NYPH/Columbia use autotransplantation to remove deeply embedded tumors involving the abdominal blood vessels, which would otherwise be considered inoperable. Autotransplantation is the removal and reimplantation of a patient's own organ (or organs). Unlike patients who receive organs from donors, patients undergoing autotransplantation do not have to wait for a donor to become available. They are not required to take immunosuppressant medications following surgery, as is the case with transplantation of donor organs.

  • September 2009

    Multi-Organ Autotransplant Patient Starts Third Grade in Fine Shape

    On September 9, 2009, New York Newsday published a follow-up story about Heather McNamara, whose multiple-organ autotransplant and tumor removal was performed by Dr. Tomoaki Kato during February, 2009. Heather had lost her pancreas, stomach, and spleen, which were too damaged by her tumor to be reattached, leaving her diabetic, more prone to infections, and dependent upon pre-digested food for her nutrition. The article reported that the seven-year-old, who started third grade on September 8, looked and acted like a normal, healthy girl. Dr. Steven Lobritto, who was interviewed for the article, reported that her prognosis is good, "She's a robust kid," he said. "She's right on target."

  • August 2009

    CLDT Emergency Liver Transplant Profiled by NYT

    The August 18, 2009 The New York Times profiled an emergency liver transplant in an American patient who became ill while traveling overseas. The procedure, which faced tremendous odds, was coordinated and performed by the Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation (CLDT).

  • June 2009

    Comments from Dr. Robert S. Brown, Jr. were included in a June 22, 2009 Reuters article about possible reasons for Apple CEO Steve Jobs' recent liver transplant. If the tumor migrated to the liver from the pancreas, a liver transplant may be an effective treatment, said Dr. Brown, who continued, "Our experience after a liver transplant is a return to normal function."

  • June 2009

    NYP/Columbia Offers Artificial Liver Device as Part of Ongoing Trial

    The Extracorporeal Liver Assist Device, or ELAD®, is the first artificial organ for liver patients that uses immortalized human liver cells. The Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation (CLDT) at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center is one of a few centers in the U.S. offering the device. The bedside system treats blood plasma, metabolizing toxins and synthesizing proteins just like a real liver does. The study is evaluating the effectiveness of the system in supporting patients' lives until a liver transplant becomes available. "We're also interested to see if it can relieve the burden on the patient's liver enough so that it can regenerate and regain some of its function," says Robert S. Brown, Jr., MD, MPH, site principal investigator.

    Read more.

  • March 2009

    In March, 2009, Dr. Robert S. Brown, Jr. was the featured expert in a news story on the extracorporeal liver-assist device (ELAD). He noted that, unlike previous attempts at an artificial liver, the ELAD uses human liver cells to metabolize toxins and synthesize proteins. The interview has aired on eight ABC and NBC affiliate stations across the country.

  • February 2009

    Dr. Kato Leads Historic Surgery Resulting in Successful Removal of "Inoperable" Abdominal Tumor

    Removing a tumor from a 7-year-old girl's abdomen during a 23-hour surgery on February 6, 2009, Tomoaki Kato, MD, and a team of seven surgeons and eight additional clinicians removed multiple organs from the girl's abdomen. The team removed small and large intestines, liver, pancreas, spleen and stomach, while three separate surgical teams worked to excise the tennis ball-sized tumor, which was tangled around vital organs and essential blood vessels. After removing the tumor, the team re-implanted the liver, small and large intestines. However, the girl's pancreas, spleen and stomach — non-vital organs that had been compromised by the tumor — were unsuitable for re-implantation. The surgery is the first reported case of its kind in the world. The story was covered by New York Newsday, CNN TV, WCBS TV, NY1 TV, and 1010 WINS radio New York. Read more.

  • Liver Transplant Milestone Celebrated
    For the celebration of the center's 1000th liver transplant, clinical and administrative staff folded 1000 origami paper cranes.
    December 2008

    Liver Transplant Milestone Celebrated

    Transplant recipients, donors and their families reunited with the NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia liver transplantation team on Dec. 15, 2008, to celebrate surpassing the milestone of 1,000 successful transplants. Present for the event were Drs. Jean Emond and Robert Brown; clinical director Dianne Lapointe-Rudow, DNP, Elaine Berg from the New York Organ Donor Network; and several transplant recipients, who spoke about their experiences.

    WABC-TV and WCBS Radio both interviewed Dr. Emond, who discussed how advances like living organ transplantation have helped save lives. ABCNews.com and HealthNewsDigest.com also reported on the event.

    Read the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital press release.

  • New Life for Children with Liver Failure
    April 2008

    New Life for Children with Liver Failure

    If a child suffers from a serious liver disorder, treatment by a multidisciplinary center with vast medical and surgical experience can make the difference between an excellent or poor quality of life, or between life and death. At the NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation, outcomes far surpass the national average, with 92% of children surviving at one year, 89% surviving at two years, and 88% surviving at three years after liver transplantation. But short-term survival is not the goal. If a child lives only one or two years, that is not a successful transplant. Our goal is for every child to live a normal life well into adulthood.

  • Preventing and Treating Adult Liver Disease
    April 2008

    Preventing and Treating Adult Liver Disease

    The Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation offers a full spectrum of services to patients suffering from all forms of liver disease, from walk-in office consultations, to antiviral treatment for Hepatitis C and Hepatitis B, to liver transplantation. In a trend that reflects the rising obesity epidemic, physicians at the center are seeing increasing numbers of patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, a condition associated with obesity. While non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is clearly on the rise, undetected viral hepatitis C infection accounts for about 50% of the center's patients with chronic liver disease. Alcoholism accounts for the next largest group of patients at the center, which is noted for its comprehensive, multidisciplinary treatment program.

  • March 2008

    On March 27, Fox Business ran a Schering-Plough Corporation press release regarding the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of label revisions for peginterferon alfa-2b and ribavirin, as a combination therapy for chronic hepatitis C. Robert S. Brown Jr., MD, MPH, was co-principal investigator in the study leading to the label revision, WIN-R. The release was picked up by the Biloxi Sun Herald, and CNN/Money.

  • November 2007

    Robert S. Brown, Jr., MD, provided comments for a November 14, 2007 New York Times article about four transplant recipients in Chicago who contracted H.I.V. from an organ donor, the first known cases in more than a decade of the virus being spread by organ transplants. The organs also gave all four patients hepatitis C, in the first reported instance of the two viruses being spread simultaneously by a transplant. "It still remains that the biggest risk for patients on the transplant list is being on the list and not receiving an organ," Dr. Brown said, "there is always a drive toward better testing, but if it leads to more organ wastage, we'll probably hurt more people than we help...what I tell my patients is, the likelihood of being infected with HIV or hepatitis in that small window of time is incredibly small, and the risk of dying on the waiting list is not incredibly small." The story was picked up by the Akron Beacon Journal.

  • 2007

    Multimodality Approach Improves Outcomes in Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    With nationally and internationally recognized authorities in established modalities as well as experimental techniques, the treatment team for hepatocellular carcinoma and hilar cholangiocarcinoma at the Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center is setting new standards for patient outcomes—including long-term survival—in resection, adjuvant therapies, and transplantation.

  • 2007

    New Drugs, Dosing Highlight New Approaches to Hepatitis C

    The Center for the Study of Hepatitis continues to be actively involved in both clinical and basic science research in an effort to identify new treatments for patients infected with the hepatitis C virus (HCV). A multidisciplinary approach is central to efforts at the Center, which is a collaborative endeavor of Weill Cornell clinicians and researchers at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital along with colleagues at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center and researchers at Rockefeller University.

  • 2007

    Liver Transplantation: Better Preservation of Donor Organs May Enable More Transplants

    As advanced as the field of organ transplantation has become, several important challenges remain. Of these, the availability of donor organs stands paramount. Among those with end stage liver disease, over 17,000 patients wait for a donated liver every year in the U.S., but fewer than 6000 receive one, and about 1800 people die while on the waiting list. As a result, researchers are avidly working to find ways to safely use as many potential donor organs as possible, including organs that once may have been considered "imperfect."

  • Living Donor Liver Transplantation Saves Lives
    2006

    Living Donor Liver Transplantation Saves Lives

    At this time there are eight patients on the waiting list for every available liver — and many patients are considered too sick or too old to even get a place on the list. To address this serious shortage, the Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation (CLDT) is pioneering methods of increasing access to liver transplantation. Living donor liver transplantation offers one solution.

  • May 2006

    Largest U.S. Hepatitis C Trial Provides Insight into Optimizing Treatment for Patients

    Dr. Robert Brown is Co-Principal Investigator of the WIN-R trial, the largest hepatitis C study ever conducted in U.S. patients. The community-based study which involved more than 4,900 patients at 225 centers across the United States, showed significantly better outcomes with weight-based dosing. The study findings were reported at the Digestive Diseases Week (DDW) annual meeting, May 20-25, 2006, at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Dr. Brown and the study's Principal Investigator, Dr. Ira Jacobson of Weill Medical College of Cornell University, are co-directors of New York-Presbyterian Healthcare System's Liver Clinical Trials Network (LCTN). Click here to read the press release on study presentation at the Digestive Diseases Week.

  • February 2003

    Dr. Brown Presents First Data on Living Donor Liver Transplant

    Procedure shown to be safe for donors and recipients

    Robert S. Brown, Jr., MD, MPH is the principal author of an article entitled "A Survey of Liver Transplantation from Living Adult Donors in the United States," published as a Special Article in the February 27, 2003 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. The article is the first to present comprehensive data on adult to adult living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) in this country, with responses from 84 of the 122 programs now doing LDLT. Those 84 centers performed more than 90 percent of all cadaveric liver transplants (transplants that use organs harvested from someone who has died) in the U.S. in 1999 and 2000. Columbia University Medical Center has one of the nation's most active and outstanding living donor liver transplant programs.

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