Limitations of Currently Available Treatment Options for Acute Forms of Liver Failure
Given the liver’s complexity, there are no simple or widely effective medical solutions to acute forms of liver failure. The only long-term cure for acute liver failure is surgical transplantation. As published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, there were 8,082 liver transplants performed in the U.S. in 2017. Also, according to a research report on the 2017 U.S. organ and tissue transplant cost estimates from Milliman, one of the world’s largest providers of actuarial and related product services, the average billable charge for a liver transplant in 2017, including the one month before surgery and six months after surgery, was $812,500. There are approximately 14,000 patients currently on the transplant waiting list and approximately 1,200 patients die while waiting each year. Similarly, there are approximately 7,000 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 forms of liver failure.