Liver Surgery

Liver surgeries include resection (removal) of all or a portion of the liver. It is also referred to as a hepatectomy, full or partial. A complete liver resection is performed in the setting of a transplant; a diseased liver is removed from a deceased donor (cadaver). A living donor may also provide a piece of liver tissue which is procured through a partial hepatectomy. The procedure may be performed through a traditional open procedure or using minimally invasive techniques. The most common malignant neoplasms (cancers) of the liver are metastases; those arising from colorectal cancer are the most common. The common primary malignant tumour of the liver is the hepatocellular carcinoma. Hepatectomy is the procedure of choice to treat intrahepatic gallstones or parasitic cysts of the liver. Surgery is contraindicated in patients with acute hepatitis, acute liver failure, and alcoholic hepatitis. Once liver disease is identified in a patient, an assessment of the severity of liver disease should be undertaken and an evaluation for other known risk factors for perioperative mortality. Liver surgery is safe when performed by experienced surgeons with appropriate technological and institutional support.

FAQs

How does one’s body cope if he/she loses a part of liver?

There is a lot of spare capacity in the liver and it can regenerate itself, and grows back to near-normal size within six to eight weeks. If patient’s liver is healthy, he/she will be able to cope with removal of up to two-thirds of their liver.

What are the chances of surviving the operation?

The global evidence indicates a mortality rate of less than 5% from major liver surgery. In other words, patients have at least a 95% chance of surviving their operation.

Will I be able to eat normally afterwards?

Yes, once the liver has regenerated there are no dietary restrictions.

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