Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Abdominal wall transplantation is a technique used to achieve abdominal closure after intestinal and multivisceral transplantation. This review focuses on whether there are additional benefits for the skin component as an immune-monitoring tool. RECENT FINDINGS: The largest series of abdominal wall transplants has recently been published. Alongside the physiological advantage gained in abdominal closure, the authors describe the immunological insight that the skin component can provide and how this contributes to the management of patients. The skin appears to develop a rash with early rejection, which facilitates early systemic treatment before significant visceral rejection occurs. It can also help in cases in which there is diagnostic doubt regarding the cause of bowel dysfunction such as in instances of intestinal infection. Despite the additional immunological burden of donor tissue, there appears to be no requirement for increased immunosuppressive therapy. SUMMARY: The technical and immunological feasibility of abdominal wall transplantation has now been demonstrated by several centres. Skin transplanted as part of the abdominal wall or as a separate vascularized sentinel skin flap may aid in the diagnosis of rejection. This has the potential to improve graft survival and reduce immunosuppressive morbidity.

Original publication




Journal article


Curr Opin Organ Transplant

Publication Date





536 - 540


Abdominal Wall, Composite Tissue Allografts, Graft Survival, Humans, Skin Transplantation