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HindustanTimes Thu,28 Aug 2014

Liver transplant: Even a second-hand organ is vital

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Lucknow, December 18, 2012
First Published: 13:20 IST(18/12/2012) | Last Updated: 13:24 IST(18/12/2012)

Madhu suffered from an auto-immune disease back in 1995 and thereafter here liver failed. On medication for the next nine years, her condition only worsened till a road accident in New Delhi on March 12, 2004.

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The man who met with the accident died but his liver gave new life to Madhu, thanks to the science of liver transplant. “My daughter was not sure whether I would return alive as even after the operation my health was bad. Today I can say I am fine,” says Madhu, a housewife. No wonder liver transplant operations have 95% success rate in India now.

Addressing a medical meet on liver transplants in India organized to spread awareness by doctors of Medanta the medicity on Sunday evening, Madhu and several other patients who underwent liver transplant operations shared their stories. While patients shared their success stories doctors threw light on how this operation has gained in terms of success rate.

The meeting was conducted by Dr Gourdas Chaudhri, who shared the experiences with patients and their family.

“Liver transplant becomes necessary for those who have more than 60% of their liver damaged. Since this disease does not give an early symptoms, awareness programmes should be undertaken by the government in every state,” said Dr AS Soin, chief liver transplant and hipatobilary surgeon of Medanta.

Studies suggest about 90% of the patients do not realise their liver is getting damaged as the early symptoms such as sleeplessness, tiredness etc are common with other problems.

The clear symptoms such as blood in vomit, yellowness in the eyes and deep jaundice occur when the liver is more than 50% damaged.

“Since the cost is high and government does not support free transplants, only 20% Indians have the affordability to such a transplant. More so cadaver donation by brain dead patients is negligible in India hence complexity of this operation here is more than other countries such as US,” said Dr Soin.

Sharing statistics, Dr Gourdas Chaudhri said in the past decade, the number of patients with liver diseases has doubled while that of heart diseases and breast cancer has declined. Experts said live donor should be a family member, and should be between 18 and 55 years of age group.


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