(Resection, Hepatic; Liver Resection; Resection, Liver)
DefinitionHepatic resection is surgery to remove a portion of the liver.
Reasons for ProcedureHepatic resection is most often used to treat cancer in the liver. It can also be done for the following reasons:
- Treat other tumors in the liver, including non-cancerous lesions
- Treat cancer that has spread to the liver—most often seen in those with colon cancer
- Liver transplant donation
- Treat trauma to the liver
|Liver Cancer From Cirrhosis|
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Possible ComplicationsYour doctor will review possible complications such as:
- Excess bleeding
- Reaction to anesthesia
- Nausea and vomiting
- Low blood sugar
- Liver failure
What to Expect
Prior to ProcedureYour doctor may do some of the following:
- Physical exam
- Blood tests
- Liver function tests
- You may be given chemotherapy to shrink liver tumors
- You may meet with a doctor who specializes in liver surgery
- Your doctor may do tests to determine the exact location of the tumors:
- Abdominal ultrasound —a test that uses sound waves to make an image in the abdomen
- CT scan —a type of x-ray that uses a computer to make pictures of structures in the abdomen
- PET scan —a test that uses a small amount of radiation to locate areas in the body with abnormal metabolic activity, such as cancers
- MRI scan —a test that uses magnetic waves to make picture of structures in the abdomen
AnesthesiaGeneral anesthesia will be used. It will block any pain and keep you asleep through the surgery.
Description of the ProcedureThe doctor will make an incision in the right upper abdomen, under the rib cage. The doctor will remove any tumors on the liver and some of the surrounding healthy tissue. Sometimes, the gallbladder will also need to be removed. The doctor may use an ultrasound probe to examine the liver during surgery to make sure there are no remaining tumors. Your doctor may leave a drain going from inside your abdomen to outside your body. This will drain any blood or leakage from the liver. The doctor will close your incision with stitches or staples.
Immediately After ProcedureYou will be taken to the intensive care unit for about 24 hours. The hospital staff will monitor you.
How Long Will It Take?3-7 hours
How Much Will It Hurt?Anesthesia will prevent pain during surgery. Pain and discomfort after the procedure can be managed with medications.
Average Hospital StayThe usual length of stay is 3-7 days. The doctor may choose to keep you longer if there are complications.
Post-procedure CareAt the Hospital
- You will receive nutrition through an IV. It will be removed once you are eating and drinking.
- You may have drains from the incision site to help the wound heal properly. Drains are usually removed before you leave the hospital.
- You may have a small catheter put into your bladder to drain urine. It will be removed in a few days.
- You will be given medications to manage pain. These may be given through injections, your IV, or through a pump attached to a needle in your arm.
- You may be given medications to prevent nausea.
- Washing their hands
- Wearing gloves or masks
- Keeping your incisions covered
- Washing your hands often and reminding your healthcare providers to do the same
- Reminding your healthcare providers to wear gloves or masks
- Not allowing others to touch your incision