What is Liver Resection?

A liver resection is the surgical removal of all or a portion of the liver. It is also referred to as a hepatectomy, full or partial. A complete liver resection is performed in the setting of a transplant a diseased liver is removed from a deceased donor (cadaver).A living donor may also provide a piece of liver tissue which is procured through a partial hepatectomy, The procedure may be performed through a traditional open procedure or using minimally invasive techniques.

Why Liver Resection is done?

Most hepatectomies are performed for the treatment of hepatic neoplasms, both benign or malignant. Benign neoplasms include hepatocellular adenoma, hepatic hemangioma and focal nodular hyperplasia. The most common primary malignant tumour of the liver is the hepatocellular carcinoma. Hepatectomy may also be the procedure of choice to treat intrahepatic gallstones or parasitic cysts of the liver.

How Liver Resection Surgery is done ?

Liver resection

Liver resection is the surgical removal of part of the liver. Liver resections can be performed laparoscopically, using small incisions and a fiber optic camera, or in an open fashion, in which a large incision is made in the patient’s abdomen. Liver resection is performed as a treatment option for the removal of liver cancer and cancerous tumors. Up to half of the liver can be removed, as long as the remainder is healthy. A healthy resected liver can regenerate itself in a matter of weeks.

Laparoscopic Liver Resection

Laparoscopic liver resection is a minimally invasive approach to the liver resection procedure. It is performed under general anesthesia. During the laparoscopic liver resection procedure, very small incisions are made and a small fiber optic camera is used to remove tumors from the surface of the liver. For larger tumors or tumors located deeper within the liver, an open procedure is necessary.

The benefits of laparoscopic liver resection include minimal blood loss during the surgery, lessened pain and discomfort after the procedure, less scarring, both internally and externally, and a shorter hospital stay and recovery time.

Open Liver Resection

The open liver resection procedure gives the surgeon operating on the liver good visibility, especially for larger tumors, or tumors that are located deep within the liver. For these types of liver tumors, open resection is the optimal method of removal.

The benefits of open liver resection include improved life expectancy and quality of life following the resection surgery and the ability it gives surgeons to remove less of the healthy, normal liver while still completely ridding it of all of the tumors.

Post operative recovery

  1. Take pain medications as prescribed and when required. Visit your surgeon if those medications do not reduce your pain.
  2. Follow the diet as instructed and do not drink alcohol.
  3. Do exercise, especially walking.
  4. Make sure to drink 8 glasses of liquids daily.
  5. Sometimes the skin below your incision will feel numb, this is normal and will go away over time. If you have any drainage from your incision or if the area around your incision is puffy or red, visit your surgeon.
  6. Take a shower every day with warm water.
  7. When you are ready to take solid foods, make sure to eat 4 to 6 small meals every day.
  8. Do not lift heavy weights for 8 weeks after your surgery.
  9. Talk to your surgeon before you get back to work, especially if your work involves lots of heavy lifting or movement.
  10. Take a small walk after every hour to prevent blood clots.

Advantages of Liver Resection Surgeries

Removing a cancerous liver tumor is the surest method of:

  1. Eradicating the cancer
  2. Preventing its spread to other parts of the body
  3. Curing your cancer or extending your life