Changes in liver function and size after a severe thermal injury

Short Title:
Changes in liver function and size after a severe thermal injury
Model System:
Reference Type:
Journal Article
Accession No.:
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):
2007, vol. 28, issue 2, pp 172-177
Publication Website:
Hepatic homeostasis and metabolism are essential for survival in critically ill and severely burned patients. There is evidence that the liver undergoes hypertrophy after burn. However, the extension and the duration of liver enlargement are not known. The aim of the present study was to determine the changes in liver size, weight, and hepatic protein synthesis in a large prospective clinical trial throughout acute hospitalization and up to 12 months after burn. Liver size was measured by means of ultrasound, and liver weight was calculated weekly during short-term hospital stay and at 6, 9, and 12 months after burn. The liver size was then compared with the predicted liver size for each individual. The levels of hepatic proteins and enzymes were determined by using standard laboratory techniques. One hundred two children were included in the study, with 58% +/- 2% total body surface area and 45% +/- 2% third-degree burn. Liver size and weight significantly increased during the first week after burn (mean +/- SEM, 85% +/- 5%), peaked at 2 weeks after burn (mean +/- SEM, 126% +/- 19%), and, at discharge, increased by 89% +/- 10%. At 6, 9, and 12 months, the liver weight increased by 40% to 50% compared with the predicted liver weight. The hepatic protein synthesis was affected up to 9 months after burn. The liver demonstrates a significant enlargement during short-term hospitalization, accompanied with impairment in the hepatic protein synthesis. The treatment to prevent liver enlargement and the improved impaired function may result in a reduction of complications accompanied with liver hypertrophy and failure.
Jeschke, M.; Mlcak, R.; Finnerty, C.; Herndon, D.
Author Address(es):
Shriners Hospitals for Children and University of Texas Medical Branch, 815 Market Street, Galveston, TX 77550, USA

Some items may be available for document delivery from the National Rehabilitation Information Center. Make a note of the title and any accession number and contact NARIC at 800-346-2742 to request a copy. There is a charge for document delivery from the NARIC collection.