Over the past few decades, liver disease has emerged as the leading global cause of death. A liver transplant is the procedure of replacing a diseased liver with a healthy one. Either a brain dead patient or a patient who is still alive provides the donor with their liver. Nearly 8000 people in the US have had a liver transplant, according to new data.
One of the most important organs is the liver, which is located behind the rib cage. Its primary job is to break down harmful chemicals like alcohol and narcotics and metabolize proteins, lipids, and carbs. The liver also produces the chemical compounds required for blood coagulation. Additionally, it eliminates bile, a digestive fluid that builds up when the liver isn’t working correctly.
A liver transplant is a process in which a diseased portion of the liver is removed and replaced with a donor liver that is healthy. The donor liver may come from a deceased or living person. Given that it filters blood and eliminates toxins from the body, the liver is one of the most important organs. When all other forms of treatment have failed, liver transplant surgery is the last resort for treating chronic liver disorders.
What is the leading cause of liver transplants?
The following is a list of the most prevalent illnesses that ultimately necessitate a liver transplant:
- Hepatitis B, C, and D are long-lasting viral infections that harm the liver over time by inflaming it.
- immediate liver failure
- The immune system is weakened and liver tissue is destroyed in auto-immune hepatitis.
- Drinking and liver disease
- Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
- primary cirrhosis of the liver
- liver or hepatic tumours
- genetic and metabolic diseases
Children may require a liver transplant for the following indications in addition to the ones indicated above:
- Variceal haemorrhage and portal hypertension
- liver function failure, including increased clotting time, reduced albumin, etc.
- progressive biliary sludge
- Encephalopathy caused by recurrent cholangitis
- severe hypersplenism accompanied with a dysfunctional liver.
What medical disorders call for liver transplants?
Following a terminal stage, the following conditions may eventually necessitate a liver transplant:
- The last stage of liver cirrhosis, which can come from chronic hepatitis, primary biliary sclerosis, hemochromatosis, and other conditions.
- Hepatic adenomas, primary hepatocellular carcinoma, hepatocellular malignancies, and cholangiocarcinoma are examples of liver cancer.
- Fulminant hepatic failure can also be brought on by hepatic thrombosis and fulminant viral hepatitis (A, B, C, and D).
- Congenital conditions of the liver.
After a liver transplant, is it possible to lead a regular life?
Despite this, there is a very good success rate of about 70 to 80 percent with a quick recovery. There are, however, always certain possibilities of having related dangers and issues; a few of these are listed below:
- bleeding inside
- Blood clotting
- failure of a liver transplant
- liver donation rejected
- mental haziness
Among the negative effects of these anti-rejection drugs are the following:
- High triglycerides
- elevated blood pressure
- thinned bones
The following hazards are associated with liver transplants using living donors:
- Bile material leakage – The bile fluids begin to flow occasionally outside the liver. The majority of the time, this may be resolved on its own, although it can occasionally be treated by doctors by placing a tube in the liver.
- Infection:-Another typical infection at the operation site is the spread of infection.
- Organ harm – Donating a living liver occasionally causes liver damage.
What takes place throughout a liver transplant?
Two types of liver transplants can be roughly distinguished:
- Using a deceased donor’s liver as a transplant
- liver transplant with a living donor
A liver transplant from a deceased donor is carried out under general anaesthesia. To reach the liver, an extensive abdominal incision is done. The injured liver’s blood supply and bile ducts were severed and removed. The bile ducts and blood arteries are rejoined once the replacement liver has been implanted in the body. A 12-hour procedure of this kind is required.
A part of the donor’s liver is placed in the recipient’s body during a living donor liver transplant. The donor has the initial surgery to remove the necessary portion of the liver. After that, the patient’s body will receive the donated liver portion, which will then be connected to the patient’s blood supply and bile ducts.
What to anticipate following a liver transplant?
For a few days, you will need to stay in the hospital’s critical care unit where you will be watched for any difficulties.
- You will be moved to the transplant recovery section for recuperation once your condition is stable.
- You will be released from the hospital after five to ten days and have to have regular visits with the physician. The doctor may advise having blood tests several times each week at first, then less frequently.
- After that, you will require medicine for the rest of your life. Immunosuppressant medications, for example, prevent the immune system from attacking your liver. To avoid liver transplant problems, other medications are suggested.
What guidelines must be followed following the procedure?
- Visit the hospital for the first three months following the transplant, 1-2 times per week.
- As directed by the surgeon, take your meds. Immunosuppressive drugs can be necessary for you to avoid any body rejection signs. You could also require certain antibiotics and antihypertensive medications.
- Low-sodium, low-calorie diets are advocated. The diet should also be well-balanced at the same time.
What is the expense of a liver transplant?
Overall liver transplant costs in India are estimated to be 50% lower than those in comparable western nations. This is the main reason why most foreign patients choose to receive their medical care in India. The country is also well renowned for its first-rate infrastructure and accomplished surgeons.
In India, a liver transplant typically costs roughly 38,000 USD. However, the precise price varies on a number of factors, including
- surgeon’s fees for doing liver transplants
- The cost of drugs
- Accommodation type
- The hospital and the city
- The case’s complexity.