One Year Old Boy Undergoes Successful Live Liver Transplant At Gleneagles Global Health City


One year old boy with Extra Hepatic Biliary Atresia underwent a successful liver transplant at Gleneagles Global Health City. The child hails from Andhra Pradesh, was suffering from biliary atresia. Extra Hepatic Biliary Atresia is a congenital condition in which the bile duct connecting the liver with the intestines is absent. Because of that, patient had severe liver damage. His condition was critical, and the only option was to undergo a liver transplant.

The child was under treatment for jaundice since birth; however, the underlying condition was undetected. Doctors from Gleneagles Global Health City identified the actual cause and further performed a highly successful liver transplant with the help of a segment of liver donated by the child’s father. The liver transplant team took more than 8 hours to perform the surgery. The boy had an uneventful postoperative course. The transplant helped in improving the liver function which further normalized his health condition. He was subsequently discharged on the 13th postoperative day.

The successful transplant was performed by the team of doctors comprising of Dr Vivek Vij, Dr Rajanikanth Patcha V, Dr Puneet Dargan, Dr Joy Varghese, Dr Karnan and Dr Mohan Babu from the Institute of Liver Diseases and Transplantation, Gleneagles Global Health City. The liver transplant for the child was covered under Chief Minister Insurance scheme and from the fund collected by Gleneagles Global Health City through a special drive with the help of social media to meet the medical expenses for the transplant.

Speaking about the transplant, Dr Rajinikanth Patcha, Senior Consultant Liver Transplant and Hepatology and HPB Surgery said “Biliary atresia is a genetic disorder in which the biliary system is closed or absent. The actual cause of biliary atresia is still unknown. In this particular case, the biliary system was absent; as a result, the child’s liver was severely damaged. He was suffering from jaundice and was in the advanced stage which led to liver failure. The liver transplant was the only option for us to save his life. The transplant was challenging as the baby weighed only 5.7Kg and he also had many risk factors. Nevertheless, the transplant was successful and the child recovered well.

Extra Hepatic Biliary Atresia (EHBA) is responsible for 60% of liver failure cases in children. This condition occurs in 1/15,000 children said Dr Joy Varghese, Director, Hepatology and Transplant Hepatology, Gleneagles Global Health City. The other cause of liver disease in children is metabolic defects of the liver, which happens due to defects in enzymes that are manufactured in the liver. Normally through the metabolic cycle, toxic substances are cleared and the nutrients are absorbed. When there is some disturbance, the liver begins to malfunction. This leads to abnormal products to deposit in the liver causing liver damage and cirrhosis. Early diagnosis and corrective surgery will help 50% of newborn babies to evade liver failure due to jaundice, said Dr Joy Varghese.

Dr Vivek Vij, Director, Liver Transplant & HPB Surgery, Gleneagles Global Health City, said, “ Liver transplant in infants below 10kg is very complex as the parts of liver that was removed from the donor for transplant has to be reduced to smaller size to fit the child’s liver. This process is called a reduced liver graft and it needs an expertise to understand the extent to which the liver can be reduced so that its functionality remains the same. Another challenge is to perform absolutely bloodless surgery as child body was too small to withstand the blood loss.

“Recently, Gleneagles Global Health City received the award of appreciation by the Honorable Minister for Health, Government of Tamil Nadu for its excellent performance in the Deceased Donor Program in the state during 2018 – 19 by Transplant Authority of Tamil Nadu (TRANSTAN).”