When the liver does not function properly then one has to undergo the procedure of liver transplant. In this procedure, the non-functioning liver is removed and simultaneously replaced with the healthy liver.
The liver is the main organ that performs several important functions like processing nutrients, producing bile juice, helping in making proteins, removal of bacteria, toxins from the blood, also prevents infections, and helps in the regulation of immune responses. A liver transplant is for those having complications of the liver due to chronic liver disease or the failure of the healthy liver.
Type of the liver transplant
Living donor liver transplant is usually done for the people whose whole liver has failed and the liver is not functioning despite the treatments. It is also suggested for people who have liver cancers. Some liver failures happen quite quickly and some take a long time. When the liver failure is quick then it is called acute liver failure, which could be caused by complications of the medications.
The other liver failure is a chronic liver failure that happens over the months and years. The cause is usually due to the scarring of the liver, which is also known as cirrhosis in medical terms. The scar tissues are replaced by normal tissue which causes the poor functioning of the liver. The main causes for cirrhosis include;
Diseases like hepatitis B and C
Excess alcohol consumption.
A disease where the fat builds up in the liver causes damage to the cells in the liver.
There are some more diseases like biliary cirrhosis that affect the bile ducts.
There are some risks involved in very rare cases, they are;
There could be the possibility of leakage of the bile ducts.
There could be bleeding in the area.
The liver that has been donated could not be accepted by the body.
Infections might take place.
Long-term complications could be a reoccurrence of liver disease.
Once there is a notification of the availability of the donor one has to go to the hospital immediately. The examination will be done to check if the body is healthy to undergo the surgery. A liver transplant is usually carried out through general anesthesia. The surgeons will proceed with the procedure to remove the diseased liver and replace it with the healthy one. The time duration of the surgery might take up to 12 hours depending on the situation. Once the liver has been replaced and has been covered with the required procedures, the patient is taken to the intensive care unit for recovery.
In the intensive care unit, the doctors will monitor the condition and the functioning of the liver. One has to be in the hospital for about 5 to 10 days. Once the condition is stable, it is very important to have regular checkups. Initially, there will be frequent blood tests.
Once the liver transplant is done then the medications have to be taken throughout the lifespan to prevent any kind of rejections of the liver that is donated. The medication of anti-rejection drugs suppresses the immune system, which increases the possibility of infections. After six months it will be fully healed and one can resume the normal duties after talking to the doctor.
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