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Date: 24 September 2023

Time: 09:14

Operation questions and answers

What happens when I arrive at the hospital for my transplant?

You will be seen by the doctors and nurses and checked out to make sure you are free from infections and well enough to undergo the transplant.

You will also have a chest X-ray and an electrocardiogram (ECG).  Blood will be taken to enable the blood bank to prepare blood products for the operation.

In the morning you will be seen by the transplant co-ordinator and possibly the anaesthetist before your transplant.

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How long does the operation take?

Including the time spent in the anaesthetic room, approximately six to eight hours.

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What are the risks when having a liver transplant?

The risks will be discussed with you in depth by the transplant co-ordinators and the surgeon during your assessment.

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What are my chances of survival after a transplant?

It is easy to be misled by statistics. Survival rates are dependent on a number of factors. These include, but are not limited to:

  • how old you are
  • how ill you are at the time of your transplant
  • the cause of your liver disease

More information is available in the external link box.

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How long will I be in hospital after my transplant?

The majority of patients are in hospital for 7 to 10 days following transplant. However, if there are complications or if you are slow to recover you may be in hospital for longer. Sometimes, if recovery is slow, patients are transferred to their local hospital to continue their recovery before going home.

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What happens if I die?

If you are very sick, the doctors, nurses and transplant co-ordinators will do everything possible to get you better and ensure that your family are kept aware of your condition. If you were to die your family would be asked for their consent for a post mortem examination. The hospital's Bereavement Officer would also help with making any arrangements and ensuring that your family's needs are met. 

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