Liver is a vital organ of your body which responsible for filtering the blood and removing all the harmful toxins from the body. Thus it is important that you have a healthy liver. Liver transplant also known as hepatic transplant is one of the revolutionary treatments that can help in saving the lives of those with chronic and severe acute liver diseases. In a liver transplant surgery, a damaged liver is surgically removed and replaced with a healthy one. It is important that after the operation, the health of both, the donor and the receiver is monitored.  Post-operation, Liver Transplant recovery depends on various factors such as patient’s health, age, infections, the severity of the disease, infections, complications post-surgery, etc. 

After the operation, donors usually gain consciousness immediately. They may have a feeling of drowsiness given to the anesthesia. The donors usually recover fast however, they need to be monitored for the first two days for any complications, internal bleeding, infections, etc.  

The condition of the receiver is extremely critical post-surgery. They need to be monitored carefully for the first 1-2 days as there are chances that serious life-threatening complications may take place. The liver needs to be analyzed at regular intervals to see if it functions smoothly. The donors and the receivers both are able to start walking in two or three days post the surgery. Patients may experience some of the common symptoms such as loss of appetite, fever, vomiting, nausea, exhaustion, drowsiness, etc. while recovering. Once the patient gains strength and the liver starts functioning again, they are given a discharge. 

After getting a discharge from the hospital, there are a couple of things one needs to look after for the successful functioning of the liver in the long run.

Here are a few things that a liver transplant patient needs to follow  – 

1. Hygiene 

The first three months after transplantation are crucial. Hence, the first step for a successful recovery is to ensure that you maintain hygiene – in personal life as well as in your surroundings. 

For Personal hygiene- 

Keep washing your hands regularly and properly. Use an antiseptic solution after using the washroom, before and after your meals, after coming from outside. Maintain oral hygiene, keep separate towels for bathing and use masks if you’re going to crowded places. Keep your fingernails trimmed and avoid dirt accumulating under your nails. 

For your surroundings – 

Before the patient comes back home, make sure that the house is disinfected. Ensure that your house is well ventilated.  Change your bed sheets regularly. Avoid contact with outsiders, birds, and animals who could possibly spread germs. 

 

2. Wound Care 

Patients should take a bath after a few days of the surgery in order to prevent the spread of infection of the wounds. Avoid taking baths in bathtubs in order to avoid the wound from getting wet, this may spread infection and the wound would not be healed. The dressing in the wounded area should be changed twice or thrice a week after getting back home. After having the staples removed, keep the incision area dry and clean. In case there are fluids oozing out from the place of the incision, it’s likely that there is an infection. At times as such, you should contact the hospital and get the wound checked. Patients can resume bathing regularly after the area is healed. Avoid using wheelchairs, opt for walking. 

 

3. Diet and nutrition

After the transplant, the patient may have a loss of appetite, however gradually over time it improves. A patient’s diet should be rich in proteins in order to expedite recovery. Food should be prepared in hygienic conditions. The utensils, vegetables, and fruits that you use should be washed properly and must be clean before use. It is better that you drink only boiled water. One should eat small frequent meals. In the first two to three one should consume liquid foods. Your diet should be balanced, high in proteins, low fats, and in small proportions. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. Add foods rich in calcium such as skimmed milk, soya, cheese, eggs, chicken, etc. Outside food should be highly avoided in the first three months of surgery. Some food items that you should avoid are- greasy or fried foods, partially cooked or raw food, food left overnight, red and cold meat, overripe fruits. If you have high blood sugar avoid sweets. Smoking and consumption of alcohol should be strictly avoided. Consult a nutrition expert or a dietician for a more personalized diet plan. 

 

4. Exercise 

For a steady recovery, it is paramount that you exercise regularly. You can resume all your routine activities such as climbing stairs, walking, etc. This will help you gain mobility and strength. Try deep breathing exercises, as it improves blood circulation, expands the lungs, and helps in coughing out the sputum. Slowly you can move on to do mild exercises. One can also try meditating and simple yoga asanas for relieving the stress post-surgery.  Avoid exercises such as weight lifting, swimming, or any sort of heavy lifting work that will put a strain on the area of incision and abdominal region. It is common to feel pain in the abdominal area and the incision spot, however,  exercises should be done in accordance with what suits your body. Exercising should be limited to recovery purposes only. You can gradually increase the intensity of your exercises. Consult a physiotherapist who can help you restore movement and guide you with exercises that are more suitable for your body.

 

5. Regular check-ups and appointments 

It is imperative that you follow up with your doctors for optimizing the results of the surgery. In the first month post-surgery, it is necessary that you visit your doctor every week or two. In case a patient is unable to visit the doctor, they consult the best hepatologist online. Liver transplant is a life-altering event and hence one needs to pay a visit at regular intervals.  There is a risk of weight gain, diabetes, or high blood pressure, hence one should always do a follow-up. 

With moral support and encouragement from friends and family, recuperating from a liver transplant will be easier. One should have a positive attitude and a strong will power during and after the transplantation. You can search for the best liver specialist doctors in Delhi online.