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Types of Liver Surgery
Depending on the extent of damage to the liver, three major types of transplant surgeries are performed on a patient: -

  • Orthotopic Transplant: - It is the most prevalent type of liver transplant. Under this procedure, the entire liver of a recently deceased donor is taken. This liver is thoroughly checked to be free from any transferable infection or disease.
    For the procedure, an incision is made in the abdomen, and the damaged liver of the patient is completely removed. After that the liver from the donor is put in place, and the bile ducts and vessels are connected, and the incision is closed with stitches. The drainage tube is attached for a few days so that extra fluid is drained.

  • Auxiliary Transplant: - In this type of transplant, the whole of the recipients failing liver is not removed. Only a part of the failing liver is removed and the donor’s liver is attached to it. In such cases, new liver supports the patient during recovery, clearing toxins and preventing brain injury and it also helps the original liver recuperate. This technique is used in young children and young adults as their native liver has the higher regenerative capacity.
  • Living Donor Transplant: - In this type of transplant, the donor is usually a close relative or friend. Usually, if the recipient is an adult, the bigger right lobe of the liver is used and if the recipient is a child then the smaller left lobe is used. During the surgery, the damaged liver is removed and replaced with the healthy new liver. As the liver cells have an extraordinary capability to regenerate, both the remaining lobe and the donated lobe re-grow into full size within 2-3 months.
  • Split Liver Transplant: - This type of transplant is used when a healthy liver is available from a recently deceased person, and there are two recipients- an adult and a child. In this case, the bigger right lobe is used for an adult, and the smaller left lobe is used for the child. This way two patients can be treated with one liver. The transplanted lobes will then regenerate into original size within 2-3 months.

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