Split Liver Transplantation: In split liver transplant, the liver of a donor is divided into two parts and the two parts are implanted into two recipients instead of one. The liver can be shared between an adult and a child also.
Liver transplantation is considered the only treatment modality in patients suffering with end-stage liver diseases. The need for Split Liver Transplant arises due to the fact that the need for liver allografts surpasses the available supply of donor organs. Split liver transplantation (SLT) meets this need of increased supply of liver grafts by creating 2 transplants from 1 allograft. Split liver transplant saves two lives with one organ.
The surgeons involved in the transplant ensures that the split can be carried out safely by studying the donated liver carefully.
The first split liver transplantation was performed at Stanford in 1996 and both the patients made smooth recoveries.
Pediatric Split Liver Transplantation
In Pediatric Split Liver transplantation, one portion of the split liver is transplanted into a child and the other portion is transplanted into an adult who also is in need of a liver transplant.
Typically, the adult receives about 60 percent of the right lobe of the liver and the pediatric patient receives the other 40 percent of the left lobe of the liver.
Children suffering with liver disease usually have livers that are smaller than the normal size and it doesn’t function normally. As liver is the only regenerative organ in the body, the new liver transplanted into the child will be near to the needed amount, and the liver continues to regenerate itself to the optimal size.
The major benefit of a split liver transplant is it saves two lives with one donor liver. It also reduces the waiting time for a liver graft to become available for the transplant.
Split liver transplant is considered an important strategy to increase the supply of liver grafts by creating 2 transplants from 1 allograft.