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Mumbai: Swap Liver Transplant Saves Two Lives

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Rohit Shishodia
A complex swap liver transplant that lasted for fourteen hours at Mumbai’s Global Hospital has saved the lives of a five-year-old child and a sixty seven-year-old NRI businessman.

A swap liver transplant is known as the one where a patient’s relative donates his or her organs to another patient in need of the organ. In turn, the latter patient’s relative also donates organs to the first patient.

The condition of both patients had reached a point where they needed liver transplants for further survival. Interestingly, the blood group of patients’ relatives matched for donating the organs, which is considered to be a rare case.

In this unusual case, the child, Hammad Sheikh from Mumbai, was diagnosed with Progressive Familial Intrahepatic Cholestasis (PFIC-III), a disorder that leads to progressive liver disease and ultimately causes liver failure.

Mr Abhay Patne, the Indian businessman from Dubai, was diagnosed with liver cirrhosis (which can be described as a life-threatening liver condition that causes the scarring of the liver), and liver cancer.

A part of the liver was donated by Patne's son to Sheikh while a part of liver was donated by Sheikh's mother to Abhay Patne.  The entire procedure included four surgeries. After the procedures, the patients and donees are normal.

The complex procedure involved fifty medical professionals. The transplant was led by Dr Ravi Mohanka, Liver Transplant Surgeon and Dr Anurag Shrimal, Paediatric Liver Transplant Surgeon.

Dr Mohanka said: “Mr Abhay Patne needed a timely transplant because of liver cancer. His son Shreeneel wanted to donate part of his liver to him. To donate to an adult recipient, Shreeneel would have to donate the right lobe of his liver,”

Dr Mohanka added, “In that case, the liver which is left in him that is called the future liver remnant (FLR) would be less than 30%. Hence, it wasn’t safe for him to donate the right lobe to his father, but he could safely donate a part of his liver (left lateral lobe, around 20% of total liver volume) to a child without any complications to him.”

“Hence, after discussing with both the families, a swap liver transplant was carried out on December 12, 2019. With meticulous planning, all four surgeries were carried out at the same time. A team of more than 50 medical professionals worked together,” said Dr Prashantha Rao another doctor involved in the procedure.

“We started at 6 am and continued till 8 pm. Both the donors and the recipients responded well and recovered fast. They were discharged within two weeks after the transplant,” he added.

Dr Anurag Shrimal said: “Hammad is suffering from PFIC III and has developed Decompensated Chronic Liver Disease with Ascites (fluid in his belly) and Upper Gastrointestinal bleeding requiring multiple episodes of endoscopy.”

He needed a timely liver transplant as a life-saving surgery. His father and uncle were unfit to donate their part of the liver. His mother Sharmeen wanted to donate a part of her liver.


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