Benefits and Risks of Liver Transplant

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The liver is one of the body’s largest important organs. Its primary purpose is to filter blood from the digestive tract, ensuring that it is free of bacteria and toxins to prevent infection. The liver also produces bile, a substance that aids in the digestion and absorption of lipids by the stomach.

Meanwhile, liver transplantation is the surgical replacement of a damaged liver with a healthy one. People can give a portion of their liver to aid someone in desperate need of a transplant thanks to advances in liver transplant surgery and the liver’s unique ability to regenerate. So here are some lists of the Benefits and Risks of Liver transplants.

What is liver transplant surgery?

A liver transplant is a surgery that replaces a failing liver with a healthy one taken from someone else’s body. You have the option of receiving a whole liver from a recently deceased donor or a portion of a liver from a living donor. In both your body and the body of the living donor, a split liver can grow back to full size.

On the other side, Patients should check their insurance policies to see if the liver transplant is covered.

Why is it done?

  • Some persons with liver cancer and those with liver failure who cannot control their illness with other treatments may benefit from a liver transplant.
  • Liver failure can occur suddenly or gradually over time. Acute liver failure is a failure that happens in a few weeks. Acute liver malfunction is an uncommon illness that mainly occurs as a consequence of pharmaceutical side effects.
  • A liver transplant can treat acute liver failure, although it is more commonly used to treat chronic liver disease. Chronic liver failure develops over a period of months or years.
  • A multitude of disorders can lead to chronic liver failure. The nearly all common motive for a liver transplant is cirrhosis. Scarring of the liver is the most common cause of chronic liver failure. Cirrhosis happens when blemish tissue replaces normal liver tissue, causing the liver to break down.

A variety of factors can lead to liver failure and the need for a liver transplant:

  • Hepatitis B and C are two types of hepatitis.
  • Excessive alcohol use damages the liver, resulting in alcoholic liver disease.
  • Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is a condition in which fat deposits in the liver cause inflammation and damage liver cells.
  • The liver is affected by genetic disorders. There are two hemochromatoses, which create an excess of iron in the liver, which causes a lot of copper in the liver.
  • Primary biliary cirrhosis, primary sclerosing cholangitis, and biliary atresia are among them.

Benefits of Liver Transplant

  • Giving Life as a Gift:

By being a live donor, you can reduce the time a recipient spends on the liver transplant waiting list. You also boost the chances of a successful transplant because the survival rate of a liver transplant from a living donor is higher.

In addition, your donation helps another patient on the waiting list because it frees up the recipient’s space for the next person on the list when a deceased liver becomes available.

  • Low Cost of Living:

The recipient’s insurance company usually covers the entire donation process. This includes pre-transplant evaluations, surgery, in-hospital recovery, and follow-up treatment. The Living Donor Assistance Center can help some qualifying donors pay for adequate transportation, food, and hotel expenses associated with the live donor evaluation, surgery, and follow-up appointments.

The live donor finance coordinator will provide more information during the donor evaluation. Most patients and their families choose to rent a residence near the hospital on a short-term basis.

  • Regeneration of the Liver:

The liver is the merely solid internal organ that can restoreentirely. This means that the remaining piece of your liver will grow back following surgery. Your liver can regenerate to its normal volume in as little as 30% of the time.

In two to four weeks after donating, your liver function recovers to normal, and your liver steadily regrows to nearly its former volume in about a year.

Risks of Liver Transplant

  • Lifestyle changes:

You may need to make lifestyle changes to prepare for liver donation. You can’t drink alcohol for a year after surgery to allow your liver to heal.

You will also have to go to the hospital and the lab regularly. As you build up your strength, you will steadily be able to resume your everyday activities.

  • Personal Risk and Time Commitment:

It is an invasive procedure to donate a part of your liver. Recovery requires time and effort. The pre-transplant examination is a required procedure that takes time away from other pursuits.

You will be in the hospital for four to seven days, but you won’t be able to return to work or school six to ten weeks after discharge.

  • Pain:

Following surgery, pain is to be expected. Despite your pain meds, you will have discomfort as your wound heals. You may feel tired as you recuperate, but after two to three months, most patients report feeling entirely normal.

The next are a few of the risks connected with the process:

  • Bleeding
  • Clots in the blood
  • The liver that was donated failed.
  • Infection
  • The liver that was donated was rejected.
  • Confusion or seizures in the mind
  • Long-term concerns could include the transplanted liver developing the liver disease again.

Side effects of anti-rejection drugs

You will take drugs for the rest of your life after a liver transplant to keep your body from rejecting the donor organ. These anti-rejection drugs can have a number of negative side effects, including:

  • Thinning of the bones
  • Diabetes
  • Diarrhea
  • Headaches
  • Blood pressure that is too high
  • Cholesterol levels are high.

Anti-rejection medications increase the risk of infection since they depress the immune system. Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics to aid in the fight against the disease.

Final Thoughts

There are numerous reasons for liver disease. Some things are beyond the control, while others are not even aware of until the damage is done. Liver transplant surgery offers hope to the thousands of people on the waiting list. A liver transplant could save your life if you are fortunate enough to obtain one.

The liver transplant cost might vary greatly. This comprises the pre-transplant estimate, the procedure, and the recovery time next the surgery. A number of factors influence the cost of an organ transplant.