The renal management of acute hepatic failure and liver transplantation requires an understanding of the features of liver failure and the causes of liver graft dysfunction. The management of any underlying pathology in addition to supportive care is fundamental to successful management and a return to independent renal function. These issues are discussed particularly in relationship to a case history involving a patient presenting with acute fulminant liver failure secondary to a paracetamol overdose who was successfully treated by liver transplantation and continuous veno-venous haemodiafiltration. The liver can be successfully transplanted but acute renal failure is a severe complication post-transplantation. Its appearance can be predicted in patients with pre-transplant renal dysfunction, severe graft dysfunction, or both. It may be avoided through careful selection of transplant recipients and correct timing of transplantation. Prevention of renal failure, appropriate patient selection for transplantation and timely procurement of a donor organ are vital for best use of limited donor resources. Treatment success depends on patient and donor selection, skilled surgeons, careful post-operative care, and successful immunosuppression.

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