Experts at NYU Langone’s Transplant Institute provide care for patients in need of liver transplantation. We also offer complete medical and surgical care for people who have a wide range of acute or chronic liver disease, including hepatitis B and C, cholestatic liver disease, sclerosing cholangitis, acute fulminant liver failure, hepatocellular carcinoma, and biliary tract disorders.
When a Liver Transplant Is Needed
The liver is the largest solid organ in the human body, located under the rib cage on the upper right side of the abdomen. It has many life sustaining functions, making it one of the most important organs in the body. It aids digestion by breaking down and storing nutrients, including fats, proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals. It aids circulation by filtering and processing blood to remove harmful substances. The liver is also responsible for manufacturing proteins that enable blood to clot.
Injury to the liver from hepatitis, liver cancer, excessive alcohol consumption, or nutritional deficiencies and can lead to acute liver failure or chronic scarring called cirrhosis. The damaged liver is unable to carry out its many functions. People with these conditions may experience progressively worsening symptoms.
If you have been referred for a liver transplant evaluation, your physician has recognized these signs of liver failure, and a transplant may be your best option.
There are two sources of liver donation: from a living donor, which is a person who is willing to donate a piece of his or her liver, and from a deceased donor, in which a person’s family has consented to donate the entire liver. In the United States, deceased donors are the most common source of livers for transplantation.
NYU Langone’s renowned liver and transplant specialists diagnose liver conditions and help you weigh your treatment options to determine if a transplant is the best approach.
Other Types of Liver Surgery
Our surgeons also specialize in the following procedures.
Our specialists perform nontransplant hepatobiliary surgery to manage a variety of liver, bile duct, and gallbladder-related diseases. Advanced techniques, including minimally invasive and conventional surgery, are used to treat people with these conditions.
Procedures include the following:
- surgical removal of benign and malignant diseases of the liver, including hepatocellular carcinoma
- surgical repair or removal of the gallbladder and bile duct to treat people with benign and malignant disease
- laparoscopic repair of bile duct injuries and bile duct stones
- laparoscopic gallbladder removal
Surgery for Hepatocellular Carcinoma
Surgery for hepatocellular carcinoma, or liver cancer, involves removing the portion of the liver that is diseased. This usually includes the tumor and surrounding tissue. The patient’s liver is able to regenerate within a few weeks, depending on the size of the portion removed.