Liver Transplant (cont.)
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What happens when they find a liver transplant match?
When a liver has been identified for you, a transplant coordinator will contact you by telephone or by pager. Make sure that you do not eat or drink anything once you have been called to the hospital. The transplant coordinator will notify you of any additional instructions. When you arrive at the hospital, additional blood tests, an electrocardiogram, and a chest X-ray will generally be taken before the operation. You also may meet with the anesthesiologist and a surgical resident. If the donor liver is found to be acceptable you will proceed with the transplant. If not, you will be sent home to continue waiting.
What happens during the liver transplant operation?
Liver transplants usually take from six hours to 12 hours. During the operation, surgeons will remove your liver and will replace it with the donor liver. Because a transplant operation is a major procedure, surgeons will need to place several tubes in your body. These tubes are necessary to help your body carry out certain functions during the operation and for a few days afterward.