The liver is the largest organ in the human body. It has many important functions, including helping with digestion and storing vitamins, proteins and glucose. There are many illnesses and diseases that can cause serious damage to the liver. The most common ones are the hepatitis C virus and alcohol abuse. These are also the most common reasons why people undergo liver transplantation, such as liver cancer. Living donor liver transplantation can be performed on anyone with end-stage liver disease regardless of the original cause of their disease.
The liver transplant team works closely with hepatologists, gastroenterologists, oncologists and interventional radiologists within the University of Maryland Liver Center to evaluate the disease state of each patient and devise a treatment plan that will give that patient the best possible outcome. If a transplant is deemed necessary, the transplant coordinators, hepatologists and surgeons work with the patient and their family to make sure they are the leaders of their personal medical team and are ready to take care of a transplanted organ after surgery.
The team knows how intimidating it can be for a patient facing a transplant. We make it a priority to make sure patients and caregivers understand the pre-operative and post-operative aspects of care, the long-term follow-up, and the support services and resources available to help patients become knowledgeable about the transplant process. A strong patient partner is a crucial element of a successful transplant.
Facts about the University of Maryland Liver Transplant Program:
- Patients transplanted sooner based on highest transplant rate in Maryland.*
- Performs adult living donor liver transplants as an option to get patients transplanted sooner.
- Protocols for urgent management and transplantation of patients with acute liver failure from infectious, metabolic, and alcoholic etiologies.
- Specialized transplant hepatologists managing patients’ liver failure before transplantation and utilizing new treatments for hepatitis C and hepatitis C recurrence.
- Liver transplant anesthesia team specially trained to manage complicated operative cases, minimize complications, and reduce requirements for blood transfusions.
- Aggressive tumor treatments from interventional radiology and oncology to downstage cancer and permit successful transplant outcomes.
- World-class transplant immunologists developing novel protocols to reduce risk of graft rejection, minimize and eliminate chronic steroid therapy, and preserve and protect kidney function.
- Only program in Maryland recognized by U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration for “better than expected performance” in pre- and post-liver transplant outcomes in 2012.
- Performed first liver transplant in Maryland for treatment of cholangiocarcinoma.
*Statistically higher transplant rate versus any other center in Maryland, per SRTR.
This page was last updated: June 5, 2014