Liver Transplant 1

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The liver is the bodys largest internal organ, weighing about three pounds in adults. In todays 60 Second Housecall, Dr. Edward Hill discusses liver transplantation and some of the reasons a person may need one.

Dr. Hill:

The liver has many functions, including building proteins and other substances for the body to use, removal of waste products and toxins from the blood, drug metabolism, and energy storage.

Liver disease causes these crucial functions to fail. When liver failure is too severe to respond to medications, liver transplantation may be an option. Because transplantation is a major surgical procedure and there is a shortage of available donor organs, not every person with liver failure can receive a transplant.

At each transplant center, a multidisciplinary team reviews and selects patients who are then placed on a waiting list for a suitable donor organ.

Some possible reasons for a liver transplant include:

Hepatitis C and hepatitis B, which are liver infections

Cirrhosis

Biliary atresia, a failure of bile duct formation

Toxic hepatic failure, which can occur from an overdose of drugs such as acetaminophen

Hepatocellular carcinoma, a primary cancer of the liver tissue, when found at an early, treatable stage

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.