Liver Transplant Surgery Process

During your two-day evaluation (to determine if a liver transplant is recommended), you will meet with several members of the multi-disciplinary team, which includes:

  • Clinical nurse specialist
  • Social worker
  • Pediatric transplant coordinators
  • Transplant surgeons
  • Cardiology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Anesthesiology
  • Nutrition

After consultation with the team and review of test results, the liver transplant surgeons will discuss their recommendation with you. If liver transplantation is recommended, Children’s is able to provide you with the most up-to-date advances in transplantation. The transplant surgeons will discuss and assist you in pursuing all of options available based on your child’s needs.

Types of Liver Transplant Surgery

These options include:

Waiting for a Donor Liver

Once your child is placed on the list by your transplant coordinator, we will work with your local physician in caring for your child throughout the liver transplant process. It is important that you and your local physician keep the transplant team informed of your child’s medical condition. This information could affect your child’s status on the national transplant waiting list.

Children’s recognizes that waiting is often the most difficult time for families. Your transplant coordinator will guide you during the transplant procedure and assist you in making the all necessary travel arrangements, and are available to address your questions and concerns at all times. A pager will be provided free of charge upon request.

A pediatric coordinator will contact you when an organ becomes available for your child.

Call for Liver Transplant

During this time you will again see the members of the multidisciplinary team that you met during the evaluation phase.

The liver transplant coordinator will ensure the hospital is prepared for your arrival, while the social worker will assist you in obtaining housing\sleeping arrangements. Sleeping rooms are available in the hospital.

Because your child will be in the pediatric intensive care unit during the immediate post-operative period, you will be given priority for a sleep room upon admission.

Your child will be admitted to the liver transplant unit prior to the transplant procedure, and will return to the liver transplant unit after a brief stay in the intensive care unit. The unit is specialized in caring for liver transplant recipients and is staffed with transplant-dedicated personnel.

Follow-up Liver Transplant Care

Discharge teaching begins on admission. The goal of the transplant team is to provide you with every opportunity possible to allow you to care for your child after their liver transplant.

Many hours will be spent in providing you with information that will be important for you to know once you are discharged from the hospital such as medication administration, organ transplant infection and rejection. The clinical nurse specialist and nursing staff will assist you in devising a schedule specialized to meet your child’s needs.

Once you are discharged, your liver transplant coordinator will provide a follow-up routine and continue to be your link with the transplant team, as well as your local physician. A transplant coordinator is available on a 24-hour basis for emergency situations.