Surgery-Induced Liver Failure (SILF)
Another form of acute liver failure is SILF, which is comprised of three varieties, as follows:
1. Primary Graft Non-Function, which occurs when a newly transplanted liver fails to function. This is a life threatening medical emergency, and can lead to death if a new organ does not become available quickly. We believe the ELAD System may provide patients with a bridge-to-transplant until a second liver becomes available.
2. Small-For-Size or Split Liver Transplant occurs when the transplanted liver is functioning, but may be too small to sustain the patient, either because only a small donor liver was available, or because a live person donated a portion of their liver for transplantation. We believe the ELAD System may be able to support the patient’s liver function until the donated organ regenerates to a size large enough to become independent of external support. Moreover the ELAD System may also enable transplantation of smaller liver fragments than typically used, potentially expanding the available pool of donor organs.
3.Other Forms of Surgery-Induced Liver Failure. Although liver resection can provide a cure for primary liver cancer, resection of too much tissue can lead to rapidly progressing liver failure. Currently, surgeons will typically only resect up to 50% of the liver in order to avoid death from liver failure. However, more extensive resections occasionally occur, and resection of smaller portions can also lead to liver failure. We believe the ELAD System may be able to support these patients and also enable surgeons to perform larger tumor resections.
We estimate that the first two categories of SILF account for several hundred patients a year in the United States, while the third category could represent an annual population of 10,000 or more cases a year in the United States.