Treatment Limitations

Limitations of Currently Available Treatment Options for Acute Liver Failure

Given the liver’s complexity, there are no simple or widely effective medical solutions to acute liver failure. The only long-term cure for acute liver failure is surgical transplantation. In 2013, according to the United Network for Organ Sharing, fewer than 6,500 liver transplants were performed in the United States due to an insufficient number of available donor organs. According to the United Network for Organ Sharing, the average billable charge for a liver transplant in 2011, including the one month before surgery and six months after surgery, was $577,100. There are approximately 15,500 patients currently on the transplant waiting list and approximately 1,500 patients die while waiting each year. Similarly, there are approximately 6,000 liver transplants performed per year in Europe. Outside of transplant, current therapy is defined by the treating facility and is mostly supportive and designed to manage the symptoms and complications associated with acute liver failure.