How do living donor and deceased donor liver transplants compare?
In a living donor transplant, the recipient gets part of a liver; in a deceased donor transplant, the patient gets the whole liver, according to liver transplant surgeon Dr. Robert Brown. Watch the video to learn more.
Initially, it was thought that recipients of a living donor organ would not fare as well because they only
got a partial liver graft. [ELECTRONIC MUSIC]
Research from multiple centers has shown that the outcome of living donor and deceased donor
are equivalent. Though the deceased donor gets a whole liver, that liver has been removed from the body, has been transported,
is often from an older individual, and obviously that person had some illness that caused them to die.
Whereas the living donor is carefully selected, done in a controlled setting, and is moved directly
across the hall from one operating room to the next. So the real difference between living donor and deceased donor
has nothing to do with the transplant operation but more to do with the waiting list.
Because living donors can be scheduled, they avoid waiting time and any chance of dying on the waiting list.
And research has shown that it can decrease the risk of overall mortality or overall chance of dying by 50%,
largely by decreasing waiting list death or people getting too sick to undergo a successful liver transplant.
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