Liver failure has become the most common cause of mortality across the globe. The process of replacing the damaged liver by a healthy one is known as a liver transplant. The donor's liver is either taken from a brain dead patient or from a living patient. According to recent research, nearly 8000 people in the US have received a liver transplant.
The liver is one of the most vital organs situated behind the rib cage. Its main function is to do the processing of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates along with break down of toxic substances such as drugs and alcohol. The chemical substances needed for clotting of blood are also produced by the liver. In addition to this, it excretes a digestive juice known as bile, which gets accumulated if the liver does not function properly.
What are the conditions that require a liver transplant?
There are several conditions that may eventually require a liver transplant after reaching a terminal stage:
Liver cirrhosis at the final stage, which may occur as a result of alcoholic cirrhosis, primary biliary sclerosis, hemochromatosis, chronic hepatitis, etc.
Liver cancer such as cholangiocarcinoma, hepatic adenomas, hepatocellular malignancies, primary hepatocellular etc.
Fulminant viral hepatitis (A, B, C, D) and hepatic thrombosis may also lead to fulminant hepatic failure.
Liver conditions that are congenital.
Conducted under the general anesthesia, the procedure usually takes 5-6 hours. After making an incision in the abdomen, the donor's liver is inserted and attached to the blood vessels and other bile ducts of the liver.
What are instructions that need to be followed after the surgery?
- Visit the surgery 1-2 times a week for the next 3 months after the transplant.
- Take medications as prescribed by the surgeon. You may need to take immunosuppressive medications to prevent any rejection symptoms by the body. Also, you may need some antihypertensive drugs and antibiotics.
- It is advised to have low salt and low-calorie diet. At the same time, the diet should also be well-balanced.
What is the success rate of liver transplant surgery?
Even though the exact success rate of a patient varies from patient to patient, some results have been extracted based on the study of larger masses of people. According to a study, there are,
86% survival rate for 1 year after the surgery
75% survival rate for 3 years after the surgery
70% survival rate for 5 years after the surgery
50% survival rate for 20 years after the surgery.
Factors affecting the success rate of liver transplant surgery
There are several factors that may affect the success rate of a liver transplant in India. These factors include,
- Age- younger people have more ability to recover and adapt to the new changes in the body as compared to the old age people.
- BMI - people with high BMI rate are able to recover easily as compared to those who are overweight.
- Immunocompromised patients - Patients who are already suffering from immunodeficiency disorders have an increased tendency to develop rejection symptoms in the body.
Cost of liver transplant in India
India has been a preferred choice for liver transplant by a number of international patients. This is attributed to the highly skilled and experienced hepatologists working in the top-class hospital having state-of-the-art infrastructure. Moreover, the cost of the liver transplant in India is highly affordable as compared to other countries. The cost usually revolves around 35,000 USD including the cost of investigations and other things.