Diet and physical activity interventions to improve cardiovascular disease risk factors in liver transplant recipients: Systematic review and meta-analysis

Lynsey N. Spillman, Emily Stowe, Angela Madden, Kirsten L. Rennie, Linda M Oude Griep, Michael Allison, Leia Kenney, Ciara O'Connor, Simon J Griffin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Background and aims: Cardiovascular disease, associated risk factors and obesity are prevalent after liver transplant and modifiable through lifestyle changes. Understanding what lifestyle interventions and their respective components are effective is essential for translation to clinical practice. We aimed to investigate the effects of diet and physical activity interventions on weight, body mass index and other cardiovascular disease risk factors in liver transplant recipients, and systematically describe the interventions. Methods: We systematically searched Embase, MEDLINE, Psycho Info, CINAHL, Cochrane central register of controlled trials, PeDro, AMED, BNI, Web of Science, OpenGrey, ClinicalTrials.gov and the international clinical trials registry from inception to 31 May 2023. Search results were screened by two independent reviewers: randomised control trials with interventions that targeted diet and physical activity behaviours in liver transplant recipients were considered eligible. Two independent reviewers extracted and synthesised data for study, participant and intervention details and results. We used the Revised Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool for Randomised Trials to assess risk of bias for outcomes and the GRADE approach to rate the quality of the body of evidence. When two or more studies reported findings for an outcome, we pooled data using random-effects meta-analysis. Results: Six studies were included, reporting three physical activity and three combined diet and physical activity interventions. Participants were 2 months-4 years post-transplant. Interventions lasted 12 weeks-10 months and were delivered remotely and/or in-person, most commonly delivered to individual participants by health care or sports professionals. Five studies described individual tailoring, e.g. exercise intensity. Adherence to interventions ranged from 51% to 94%. No studies reported fidelity. Intervention components were not consistently reported. In meta-analysis, diet and physical activity interventions did not significantly reduce weight or body mass index compared to control groups, however no studies targeted participants with obesity. Diet and physical activity interventions reduced percentage body fat and triglycerides compared to control groups but did not reduce total cholesterol or increase activity. The GRADE quality of evidence was low or very low. Conclusion: Diet and physical activity interventions reduced percentage body fat and triglycerides in liver transplant recipients. Further good quality research is needed to evaluate their effect on other cardiovascular disease risk factors, including weight and BMI. Interventions need to be better described and evaluated to improve evidence base and inform patient care.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100852
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalTransplantation Reviews
Volume38
Issue number3
Early online date7 Apr 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 7 Apr 2024

Keywords

  • Diet
  • Liver transplantation
  • Meta-analysis
  • Physical activity
  • RCT
  • Systematic review

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