Liver transplant has become a revolutionary treatment for those suffering from end-stage liver disease, primary liver cancer and acute liver failure. While the replacement of damaged liver by a healthy liver is effective in treating the liver disease, post-surgery care is equally important to prevent graft rejection, prevent post-transplant infection and disease recurrence.
Following discharge from the hospital after a successful liver transplant, it is important that you incorporate the following practices in order to have successful long term outcome after transplant.
The first step towards a healthy recovery begins from one’s home. When the patient comes back to home after liver transplant, the family member should keep in mind that the house has good ventilation. The patient should wear a mask in the first three months following surgery while going to crowded places. Hand washing after meeting strangers should be practised. A separate towel should be available for the patient. He must take a shower every day.
Diet and Nutrition:
After the surgery, the patient will have a voracious appetite, which is actually a good sign. The patient’s diet should be rich in protein. Drinking water must be safe and tap water should not be taken without home filtration. Raw food and salads must be avoided. One should also avoid sweets and fruits that have the potential for shooting up the blood sugar. Post-transplant medicines will often raise the blood sugar and insulin will need to be used in the first three months. Smoking is a strict no and so is gutka and tobacco. Alcohol should not be taken.
While liver transplant in India has become popular in treating liver diseases, post-surgery care is important in optimising long term results. Therefore, it is important that the recipient attend follow up clinics regularly. After the surgery, there is an increased risk of coronary artery disease as there is a tendency for weight gain, diabetes may be present and high blood pressure.
Medications are essential for the recovery process, and one should never skip their medicines prescribed by the doctors. It is also essential that patients’ families should also familiarize themselves with the medicines prescribed and ensure that the patient complies with the prescribed medication. Very rarely, wound care may be important as healing is slow in liver transplant recipients.
Regular exercise is also recommended to the patients. However, they should never lift heavy weights (>5kgs), including babies, or perform abdominal exercises such as weight training and swimming before 3 months. Deep breathing can help in expanding lungs and coughing out sputum. The patients can also consult transplant physiotherapists to optimize the exercise schedule.
In order to maximize the success of liver transplant operation, the above-listed precautions will make the transplant surgery a long-term success. With an acclaimed team of doctors at Max, “the leading liver transplant hospital in India”, post-transplant care is easy for the patient as we focus on every problem that they tell us and offer prompt solutions 24 by 7.