Wednesday, September 4, 2019

48 QUE On Liver Transplant Surgery, Donors, Survival Rates

Can anyone get a liver transplant? 
A liver transplant is surgery to replace a diseased and damaged liver with a healthy liver tissue from another person. In liver transplantation, a whole liver may be transplanted, or just part of one. In most cases the healthy liver comes from an organ donor who has just died. However, sometimes a healthy living person will donate part of their liver.

(2) What is the most common reason for liver transplant among children?
Biliary atresia is the most common reason for liver transplant among children. It is the disease that affects the bile ducts (the tubes that carry bile away from the liver). Biliary atresia is a childhood disease of the liver in which one or more bile ducts are narrow, blocked, or absent.  

(3) Why is liver transplant done?
Liver transplant is the treatment option for the patients whose liver cancer condition can’t be handled with other treatments. Cirrhosis is considered the most common cause of a liver transplant. There are two types of liver failure which are as follows:

Acute liver failure occurs quickly in a matter of weeks. It is usually the result of medication induced liver injury. It is also known as fulminant hepatic failure.
Chronic liver failure occurs slowly over months and years and is mostly caused by the scarring of the liver (cirrhosis). In cirrhosis, a scar tissue impairs liver functions by replacing normal liver tissue. Although a liver transplant may treat acute liver failure, it is more often used to treat chronic liver failure.

Article Covers:       Liver Transplant Surgery Procedure.
Reading Time:        9 Useful Minutes.

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(4) Can liver re-grow by itself?
Liver is the only organ in human body that can re-grow after parts of it have been removed or damaged. In fact, liver can regenerate back to its full size in just a few months.

(5) Is it possible to live with part of liver after liver transplant?

Recipient receives only a partial liver, however one transplant surgeon at the University of Pittsburgh estimates that you only need 25-30% of your liver to maintain normal functions. Over the passage of time, liver will regenerate to its normal size.

(6) Can you live without liver?

No. The liver is a vital organ that even you can live with only part of a liver, but you can’t live without any liver at all. Without a liver:
  1. Toxic materials and metabolic byproducts accumulate in the blood.
  2. Human immune system will break down.
  3. You can get swelling of organs even deadly swelling of brain.
  4. You can’t cope with bacterial and fungal infections.
  5. Blood will not clot and hence will lead to uncontrolled bleeding.
  6. Without a liver, death may occur in a few days.

(7) How long can you live without a liver functioning?
You can’t live without a liver completely, you can live with only part of one. Many people can function well with just under half of their liver. Your liver can also regenerate to full size within a few months.

(8) Is liver surgery dangerous? Can you die during a liver transplant?
In all types of surgeries, bleeding is a major risk. In case of liver transplant, bleeding risk is very high. Lot of blood passes through the liver and liver is also responsible for the clotting of blood.

(9) How dangerous is Liver Cancer?
People diagnosed at an early stage have a 5-year survival rate of just 31%. If cancer spreads in its advanced stage, the survival rate can be as low as 3 percent. Treatment for liver cancer often involves major surgery and carries a great risk of complications.

(10) How dangerous is a liver transplant?
The greatest risk of liver transplant operation is transplant failure. In such a case, the body rejects the new liver. A liver transplant also puts you at a high risk for infection.

(11) What is organ rejection?
Organ rejection occurs when human immune system sees the transplanted liver as foreign body and tries to destroy it. There is highest chance of organ rejection in the first three to six months of transplant surgery.

(12) What happens if a liver transplant is rejected?
Rejection is a normal reaction of the human body to any foreign object. When a new liver is planted in a recipient's body, the body sees the transplanted organ as a threat, treats it as an invading object and tries to eliminate it. The immune system makes antibodies to try to kill the new organ, not realizing that the transplanted liver is beneficial.

(13) What happens when organ is rejected?
Rejection is when the immune system of the organ recipient recognizes the donor organ as foreign body and attempts to attack it. It often occurs when your immune system detects things like bacteria or a virus. Despite the use of immunosuppression therapy, acute rejection can occur and often lead to chronic rejection.

(14) What are the signs and symptoms of organ rejection?
Organ rejection does not always cause signs and symptoms that you may feel. Anyhow symptoms of rejection may include:



Feeling tired

Dark colored urine

Yellowing of skin

Abnormal liver blood test results

Stool becoming light colored

Tenderness of abdomen

Yellowing of the white portion of eyes

(15) How to prevent organ rejection?
Immunosuppressants reduce the response of human immune system to your new liver. You will have to take two or more immunosuppressants and even for the rest of your life.

(16) What are the risks of liver transplant surgery?

Risks associated with the liver transplant procedure:

(1) Complications of the procedure:

  • Bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Bile duct complications
  • Confusion of brain
  • Infections
  • Organ Rejection
  • Shrinking of bile duct

(2) Side effects of anti-rejection medication:

(17) What are the side effects of immunosuppressants?
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Diarrhea
  • High Blood Pressure
  • High level of Cholesterol and triglycerides
  • Infection
  • Kidney damage
  • Pain in head
  • Skin cancer (with long term use)
  • Thinning of bone
  • Weight gain 

(18) What is the average cost of a liver transplant?
Liver transplant typically costs up to $600,000 or more for the whole procedure, including follow-up care and medications for the first six months after the procedure.

(19) What is the age limit for a liver transplant?
The age limit varies with a patient's overall health conditions. However, liver transplant in the patients greater than 70 years is rare.

(20) How long is the waiting list for a liver transplant?
In USA, nearly 17,000 people waiting for a liver transplant, currently. The median national waiting time in 2006 was 321 days. This does not take into consideration that in what part of the country a patient lives or the status at the time of transplant.

(21) Can you live a normal life after a liver transplant?
Liver recipients have been known to live a normal life over 30 years after the liver transplant surgery. So, after liver transplant one can lead a healthy life.

(22) How long is recovery from liver transplant?
After the liver transplant, doctors keep the patients in the ICU for two days. After that, they are in the regular part of the hospital for about eight to ten days. They then go home, however patients don’t feel well much for up to three months.

Liver Transplant Surgery
Liver transplant surgery

(23) Can a person with cirrhosis get a liver transplant?
Obesity is a common cause of cirrhosis. Alcoholism and hepatitis C also cause cirrhosis. Many people with cirrhosis have more than one cause of liver damage. A liver transplant is considered when complications of cirrhosis cannot be controlled by medications or other treatments.

(24) What are the chances of surviving a liver transplant?

Liver Transplant Success Rate:

Liver transplant survival statistics:

Sometimes the transplanted liver can fail, or the original disease may recur. The five-year survival rate for liver transplant is 75 percent.  According to a study, people who have a liver transplant have an 89% percent chance of living after one year.

(25) Can a liver transplant recipients drink alcohol?
It is not good to drink alcohol even if your liver problem was not alcohol-related. Alcohol leads to the cirrhosis and severe liver damage. So, drinking alcohol is atrocity over your liver.

(26) Who is the longest liver transplant survivor?
Gordon Bridewell is the longest liver transplant survivor who had his gruelling 12-hour op 40 years ago after doctors found an inoperable tumour. His transplant operation was led by Professor Sir Roy Calne. It was the first liver transplant in Europe in 1968.

(27) Can alcohol has any affect on liver transplant recovery?

Liver Transplant recovery:

Alcohol is not a natural compound. It is a chemical compound so it may affect your body. Alcohol can cause serious reactions with the surgery medications and affect your liver transplant recovery, seriously.

(28) How do you feel after liver transplant?
You may feel tired. Your belly and side will be sore for the first 1 to 2 weeks after surgery. You may also feel numbness near the cut/incision of surgery.

(29) How painful is a liver transplant?
There is pain after liver transplant surgery. Your healthcare provider prescribes the pain relieving medicines. Liver transplant surgery pain is not so severe than other abdominal surgeries.

(30) What is the life expectancy after a liver transplant?

Survival rates after liver transplant:

In general, about 70 percent of people who undergo liver transplant live for at least five years. This means that for every 100 people who have a liver transplant surgery, about 70 will live for five years and 30 will die within five years. People who receive a liver from a living donor often have better short-term survival rates than those who receive a liver from a person who has recently died.

(31) Do you gain weight after a liver transplant?
Excessive weight gain is common after liver transplantat. This condition is called immunosuppression. Liver transplantation frequently leads to obesity.

(32) Can liver transplant patients take ibuprofen?
If you have any questions about medications, then consult your liver transplant team or your healthcare provider. Anyhow, you must never take Motrin, Ibuprofen, Advil (Non Steroidal Anti-inflammatory drug also called NSAIDS) as the combined effect with Tacrolimus (Prograf) or Cyclosporine (Neoral, Gengraf) can cause kidney damage.

(33) Can you give part of your liver?
Yes, liver can regenerate by itself so individuals can donate a part of their liver which is then implanted into the body of recipient. This is the most common form of living donation.

(34) Who can donate liver for transplant?
A family member or closely attached people can donate their part of healthy liver. After transplantation, the partial livers of both the donor and recipient will regenerate to original size in a matter of months.

(35) Is donating a liver dangerous?
No, it is safe to donate a liver as liver can grow back to its original size. However, there are some risks that may lead to serious conditions. Researchers at Johns Hopkins say that individuals who donate a part of their liver for live transplantation usually recover safely from the transplantation procedure and can expect long life.

(36) Can O Negative donate liver to anyone?
Type O blood, are a "universal donor" and can donate to anyone (although Type O liver recipients can only get organs from people who are also Type O).

(37) Do you need to be the same blood type to donate a liver?
A living donor doesn't have to be a blood relative of the liver recipient but you must have a compatible blood type. You must also be in good health status and be motivated to donate for altruistic reasons.

(38) Do organ donors feel pain?
Declaring someone clinically brain dead requires, among other things, making sure that the patient does not respond to external stimuli, including pain. There is no evidence to prove an organ donor can't feel pain, there is also not any evidence to indicate that they could, and the latter is extremely unlikely.

(39) Can liver donors drink alcohol?
Alcohol is hazardous to health especially your vital organs. Alcohol can cause serious damage to the liver so its not wise to drink alcohol after organ donation. Liver recipient must also think about the reasons for liver transplant surgery. These things must be brought into consideration.

(40) What organ is under right rib?
The liver is located at the lower end of the rib cage on the right and the spleen is on the left. Both are given some protection by the rib bones. The gallbladder and kidneys lie just below the rib cage.

(41) Is liver failure a death sentence? Who is a liver transplant candidate?
What is liver transplant eligibility, criteria and requirements?

Liver Transplant Eligibility:

When you have end stage liver cancer and there is no remedy to treat your disease, you need a liver transplant. It is a procedure in which a diseased liver is removed and replaced with a piece of or an entire healthy one from a donor. A person whose liver fails is a liver transplant candidate.

(42) What are liver transplant types?

Types of liver donor transplants:

(1) Living Donor Transplants
(2) Deceased Donor Transplants

In living donor transplants, a family member or emotionally associated person donates a part of liver. While in deceased donor transplant, liver is taken from a person who has recently passed away. The person would have signed a donor organ card before their death.

For living liver donation, you must:
(1) Avoid alcohol

(2) Be aged between 18 and 60

(3) Blood type must be compatible with the recipient

(4) Have a healthy body

(5) Not obese as obesity leads to fatty liver disease.

Deceased liver transplant may be heterotopic or orthotopic. In an orthotopic transplant, the diseased liver is entirely removed and replaced with a healthy donor liver. Orthotopic liver transplant is more common.

In a heterotopic transplant, the damaged liver is left in place and a healthy liver or segment of liver is put in. Heterotopic transplant is suggested if:

(1) Liver disease has a genetic cause

(2) Health is so poor to withstand complete liver removal surgery.

(43) What are the contraindications for liver transplantation?

Absolute Contraindications:

  • Anatomic anomalies
  • Absence of social support
  • Acute liver failure
  • Hilar cholangiocarcinoma with liver involvement
  • Sepsis
  • Metastasis outside the liver
  • Hemangiosarcoma

Relative contraindications:

  • Infection with HIV
  • Age > 65 years
  • Serious pathologies of the lung or heart
  • Alcoholic liver disease
(44) What should I eat after my liver transplant?
You must eat healthy balanced diet. You must ask help from your nutritionist about diet plan. Search “liver cancer” in the “Search This Blog” portion of our blog and read the article to know about a healthy diet plan.
  1. Drink enough water to stay hydrated
  2. Take enough fiber in your diet
  3. Eat whole grain breads and cereals
  4. Eat lean meats, fish and poultry
  5. Avoid alcoholic drinks
  6. Eat low fat dairy products
(45) What should I avoid eating after my liver transplant?
Grapefruit can affect the working of immunosupressants. You must avoid drinking grapefruit juice.
  1. Avoid alcohol
  2. Avoid undercooked food such as meat, eggs, poultry, fish and seafood. Cook well before consuming food.
  3. Do not drink water from lakes and rivers
(46) What are the major causes of cirrhosis that lead to liver failure and transplant?

Major causes of cirrhosis:

  1. Alcoholic liver disease
  2. Biliary atresia
  3. Diseases related to bile duct
  4. Hepatitis B and C
  5. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
  6. Genetic disorders that affect liver

(47) What are the important liver transplant facts and figures?
  • About 40-60 percent of the liver is removed from the donor liver and then transplanted into recipient’s body.
  • Both the donor and recipient liver will grow back to its normal size in a few months.
  • Regrowth of liver starts immediately after liver transplant and is achieved within a year.
  • In USA, 14000 liver patients are currently on a waiting list for a transplanted liver.
  • Living liver donation is seen more and more.
  • In 2014, about 7000 liver transplants were performed in the U.S. Of these, about 330 (5%) liver transplants were the living donor transplants.
(48) How long is liver transplantation procedure?
Liver Transplant Surgery Time:
Total procedure ranges from four to eight hours. However patient comes to the hospital a day before surgery.

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