A liver transplant is a surgical procedure done in some patients with liver failure to replace their diseased liver with a healthy liver. When a patient receives a liver transplant, his or her entire liver is removed. It is then replaced by a portion of the donor’s healthy liver.
In living liver donor surgery, the donor and the recipient are placed in side-by-side operating rooms. A surgeon removes a part of the donor’s liver, typically the right half. This donated segment of the liver is then immediately placed in the recipient in the next operating room.
The remaining part of the donor’s liver is sufficient to maintain normal body functions. The recipient also receives a large enough segment of the donor liver to maintain body functions.
During approximately the next two months, the remaining and transplanted parts of the donor liver grow to normal size, providing normal long-term liver function for the donor and the recipient.