How Much Does Liver Transplant Cost in India?

“The cost of liver transplant in India starts from $23000 (INR 19,68,000). The success rate of liver transplant surgery in India ranges between 85% and 90%, which is as high as that offered by the developed countries in the west.

Liver Transplant Success Rate in India

The cost of liver transplant surgery in India starts from USD 23,000 (INR 19,68,000). The liver transplant hospitals in India promise unparalleled health treatments at a relatively lower costs compared to the rest of the world. 

The following table indicates the cost of Liver Transplant around the world:

Cost of Liver Transplant in India, Germany, Singapore, and USA
IndiaGermanySingaporeUSA
$23000$300000$400000$300000
Type of Transplant Compatible Liver Transplant
Cost USD 23,000 - USD 35,000
Donor Requirement Needs to be from family, same blood group
Additional Cost ± USD 3000
Stay in Hospital 1 Month
Stay in Country 2 Months
Accommodation Cost Starting 20 USD/Day

Patient Testimonial: Shakila Khan from Trinidad and Tobago got successful Liver Transplant in India

Patient Shakila khan and her daughter are sharing their experience about how Dr. Surbhi and Lyfboat’s team helped them with all the logistics in India while their stay in India.

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Liver as a vital organ

The liver is crucial in preventing infections, converting food into energy, and filtering out toxins from the body. To digest, assimilate, and absorb food, these organs and the liver function in perfect harmony.

However, sometimes our livers get damaged from overwork. According to research, the number of liver transplant operations has increased dramatically over the last 50 years.

The country’s liver transplant industry is enjoying a golden age as a result of scientific improvements and an increase in operations.

Additionally, the price of liver transplants has decreased, making the surgery more accessible to more people. A liver transplant in India has an 89% success rate.

It is reasonable to say that this transformation is an outcome of the accelerating speed of medical and healthcare advancements in India.

Liver Transplant in India

  • A liver that is not working correctly is replaced surgically with a healthy liver or a portion of a healthy liver from a living or deceased donor.
  • Hepatic transplantation, often known as a liver transplant, involves removing the damaged or sick liver and replacing it with a healthy liver.

The replacement procedure is also referred to as an allograft.

  • In the event of liver failure, it might be able to preserve lives.
  • Serious complications from liver failure may require hospitalization and multiple doctor visits.
  • An alternative to waiting for a deceased donor’s liver to become available is a transplant from a living donor.

Why People Choose to have Liver Transplant Surgery in India?

India is a one-stop destination for foreign patients who are looking for top medical facilities, experienced surgeons and cost-effective liver transplant surgery.

The healthcare sector in India has evolved as a global attraction for patients from all around the world. Complex procedures like organ transplantation in India are closely regulated by authorized bodies and have reliable clinical outcomes.

The top multi-specialty hospitals have specialized centres for liver transplantation programs that offer all types of liver transplant procedures including Living-donor, cadaveric (deceased), swap liver transplant and ABO incompatibility liver transplantation to the patients.

The liver transplant doctors in India are experts who have rich experience and knowledge in transplant surgeries. A multidisciplinary team of trained specialists and english-speaking nurses provide holistic care to the liver transplant patients.

Another major factor for India’s popularity amongst international patients is the cost of liver transplantation. Medical treatment in India costs much less than other countries and there are several internationally renowned hospitals that offer budget-friendly cost packages with no compromise on the quality and standard of services.

If you are looking for a successful liver transplant in India, Lyfboat can connect you with the best hospitals and surgeons in the country. We represent a number of hospitals across all major cities, including Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata, and others.

The dedicated team at Lyfboat will be happy to assist you throughout the process, from arranging consultations with the best doctors, providing budget-friendly cost-estimates at different hospitals to travel related assistance.

Causes

The following illnesses may result in end-stage liver disease:

Acute hepatic necrosis: The liver tissue now starts to degrade at this stage. Unfavorable drug, pharmaceutical, or toxin reactions and acute infections are just a couple of the possible causes.

Alcoholic liver disease/Non-alcoholic: Excessive alcohol use, chronic hepatitis, fatty liver disease, and inherited genetic diseases are among the causes.

Biliary atresia: Bile duct diseases such as primary sclerosing cholangitis, primary biliary cirrhosis, and biliary atresia. An infant with biliary atresia has an uncommon liver and bile duct disease.

Hepatitis virus: Hepatitis B or C is the most frequent cause of the disease.

Metabolic disorders: These are diseases that change the chemical activity of cells associated with the liver.

Early-stage liver cancer: These tumors are cancerous and come from the liver.

Autoimmune hepatitis: Edema or inflammation of the liver as a result of autoimmune hepatitis. This occurs when your body’s immune system targets your liver.

Symptoms a Liver Transplant Can Treat

It is commonly used as a last option. Even if one is fortunate enough to receive a donor liver because of the intense competition, it might not always be able to address the underlying issue.

Some chronic liver diseases simply restart the deterioration of the new liver. Having a healthy liver to start again could give some valuable time, but these issues often take months to manifest.

Surgery for liver transplantation is frequently saved for:

Chronic liver failure

  • Another word for this condition is liver cirrhosis. Individuals start to exhibit symptoms of “decompensated” liver disease if their liver functions start to decline.

Genetic liver diseases

  • Illnesses such as Wilson’s disease (abnormal copper metabolism), hemochromatosis (excess iron in the liver and body), and others.

Immediate liver failure

  • Acute liver failure occurs when a previously healthy liver sustains significant damage. Infections or chemical poisoning may be hazardous.
  • Acute liver failure is indicated by hepatic insufficiency symptoms, which are signs that the liver is no longer functioning.

Primary liver cancer or early-stage liver cancer

  • Primary liver cancer is another name for the form of cancer that originates in the liver and is also known as hepatocellular carcinoma.
  • The liver can be removed for therapy if the cancer has not progressed to other organs. However, if the liver is damaged, a transplant can be required.

Eligibility

If none of the current therapies for a liver problem work for a person, one might be a candidate for a liver transplant:

  • Hepatitis B
  • Hepatitis C
  • Alcoholic liver disease
  • Fatty liver disorder or Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis
  • Autoimmune hepatitis
  • Wilson’s disease
  • Formerly failed liver transplant
  • Polycystic disease
  • Hemochromatosis
  • Liver cancers
  • Primary biliary cirrhosis
  • Acute liver disease
  • A person must fulfill certain requirements and go through a number of medical evaluations before having a liver transplant.
  • If they agree, the patient’s name will be added to the list of people waiting for a deceased donor; alternatively, if the patient has a qualified living donor, surgery can be planned right away.

Conditions which may preclude a patient from receiving a liver transplant, and a patient may not be eligible for one if having –

  • Aggressive liver cancer
  • Severe undernourishment and muscle loss
  • A severe behavioural or mental health disorder
  • Severe lung or heart conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or heart failure
  • Other than liver disease, a critical ailment that would not improve with a transplant.
  • An infection that must first be treated
  • AIDS (the final stage of an HIV infection)

When is a Liver Transplant required?

Liver transplant is best advised when a person suffers from liver failure which can be a life-threatening condition.

There are two types of liver failures – Acute liver failure which occurs suddenly (over a period of a few weeks) often due to an infection, and the other is chronic liver failure which takes several months and years to occur due to prolonged exposure to chemicals, medicines and other factors.

Generally, a patient with chronic liver failure is treated with liver transplant procedure.

Liver failure may occur due to the following conditions:

  • Chronic hepatitis (B and C)
  • Liver Cirrhosis – scarring of liver tissue that leads to failure of liver functions. Causes include excess alcohol consumption, chronic hepatitis, fatty liver disease  and inherited genetic disorders.
  • Autoimmune liver diseases that affect the bile duct such as Primary biliary cirrhosis (immune system attacks and destroys the bile ducts), Biliary atresia (malformation of bile duct). Biliary atresia is a rare disease which is the most common reason for liver transplantation in children.
  • Genetic liver disease such as hemochromatosis (excess iron in the liver and body), Wilson’s disease (abnormal copper metabolism) and others.
  • Liver cancer such as primary hepatocellular carcinoma, cholangiocarcinoma, hepatic adenomas
  • Hepatic thrombosis
  • Fulminant viral hepatitis and fulminant hepatic failure

Before a person undergoes the liver transplant, he or she has to meet certain criteria and undergo a series of medical evaluations by a transplant team.

If they approve, the patient name will be put on the waiting list for a deceased donor or if a patient has a suitable living donor, then surgery can be directly scheduled.

How can Lyfboat assist you getting Liver Transplant in India?

World's Most Trusted Medical Advisory & Discount Platform

Lyfboat is a free advisory platform; we do not charge any fees from patients. In fact, we negotiate the price that Indian hospitals offer. In some cases we are able to reduce the cost by negotiating upto 20% of what Hospitals generally offer. We advise the best treatment from the top hospital/surgeon at best price.

Where does the donated liver come from?

There are mainly two types of donors:

Deceased donor: The liver is extracted from a donor who is dead (brain dead or cardiac death) and the family has given consent for organ donation. In this, the whole liver from a deceased donor is used and transplanted into the recipient. 

Living donor: A healthy person who is a close relative of the patient can donate a portion of his/her liver. This is possible due to the unique ability of the liver to regenerate and reach its normal size after the surgery.

Donor safety is the foremost consideration throughout the process and a series of screening tests are done to ensure donor is completely healthy and have compatible blood type. Living-donor liver transplantation has shown high success rates as the patient receives the transplant before further deterioration of the condition.

What are the different types of Liver Transplant Surgery in India?

There are three types of liver transplant surgeries. These include the following:

Cadaver/Deceased Donor Liver Transplantation

  • In this kind of liver transplant procedure, the patient’s diseased liver is removed first, and then the entire healthy liver from a deceased or brain-dead (Cadaver) donor is physically removed and put into the patient.
  • The time starting from taking the healthy liver from the donor’s body and placing it in the recipient’s body should be within 12 to 18 hours.
  • Before the procedure, a number of tests are conducted, and the blood group and liver size of the receiver are compared to those of the donor.
  • Once the damaged liver from the patient’s body is disconnected from the blood vessels and other abdomen structures holding it, the donor’s liver is placed and blood flow is restored. A small tube is fitted for connection to the bile duct.

Living Donor Liver Transplant

  • A piece of the healthy liver from a donor who must be a suitable first or second-degree relative of the patient is substituted for the patient’s sick liver in this form of liver transplant operation.
  • A live donor Liver transplantation involves removing a portion of the liver from a living donor; as the liver can regenerate, often within 2-4 months of surgery, because the liver may regrow itself to 90-100% of its original size.
  • Both the transplanted portion and the remaining portion of the donor’s liver can grow back to their normal sizes.

Split Liver Transplantation

  • A recently deceased person’s liver is taken, split into two pieces, and each transplanted component grows to a normal size in a different recipient.
  • Consequently, a single deceased donor liver helps two patients.
  • A deceased person’s right and left liver lobes are separated, then transplanted into an adult and a youngster, respectively.
  • The infant receives the smaller left lobe while the adult receives the larger right lobe.
  • After the procedure, the transplanted lobes recover and expand swiftly to form a liver of normal size.

The majority of liver transplants are performed using dead donors’ organs.

Donor Assessment

Before being given the go-ahead to have surgery for a liver transplant, the donor must pass a number of clinical and assessment tests after meeting the basic eligibility requirements.

In order to determine whether the donor is ready for the major surgery, clinical testing may include imaging scans, blood tests, radiology, and general diagnostic tests, as well as consultation.

When these tests are favorable, more complicated liver-specific tests may be carried out, such as:

  • MRI & CT scan of the abdomen and/or pelvis
    Ultrasound scan of the abdomen and/or pelvis
    A dobutamine stress echocardiogram (DSE)
    Electrocardiogram/chest X-ray

Goals of the Evaluation Process:

The evaluation procedure’s objectives are to ascertain whether the patients:

  • Are in good enough health to have surgery and can tolerate drugs for life after a transplant
  • Do they’ve any medical issues that could prevent a transplant from working
  • Are able and willing to take prescribed drugs as prescribed and adhere to the transplant team’s recommendations.

What happens before Liver Transplant in India?

Before undergoing liver transplantation, a patient undergoes a complete medical evaluation with specific tests. The purpose of these evaluations is to determine the fitness level of the patient, check for underlying medical conditions that can impact the transplant’s success and patient’s ability to follow-through recovery.

The liver transplant team then decides if the patient is an appropriate candidate for the liver transplant surgery.

Some of the tests that are conducted for this evaluation are:

  • Computed tomography – takes images of shape and size of the liver
  • Doppler ultrasound to check the liver’s ability to exchange carbon dioxide and oxygen
  • Stress testing and Echocardiogram
  • Test pulmonary functions
  • Blood tests for determining clotting ability, blood type and liver function.

During the assessment, if any specific problem arises, then more tests may be required.

Apart from these tests, psychological evaluation, family counselling and meetings with social workers also take place.

What happens during Liver Transplant Surgery in India?

Liver transplantation is a complicated surgery which can take five to ten hours. This duration can vary depending on the complexity of the surgery and the experience of the doctors. Complicated liver surgery duration is up to 12 – 14 hours in total.

Following are the steps of surgery:

  • General anesthesia is administered before starting the surgery and a tube is inserted through the mouth of the patient to help him/her breathe during surgery.
  • The surgeon makes an incision in the abdomen and carefully remove the diseased liver by disconnecting it with the bile duct and blood vessels. .
  • Then the healthy liver (a portion from living donor) is placed in the same position and is attached to the bile duct and blood vessels.

Recovery After Liver Transplant Surgery in India

After the surgery, patient is sent to intensive care unit (ICU) and is closely monitored by the transplant team. The entire procedure of liver transplant treatment is complicated and involves significant care and maintenance post operation. The patient stays in the hospital for about two to three weeks depending on the how the new liver works.

It is recommended to visit the doctor once or twice a week for a period of 3 months.

The hepatologist or the transplant surgeon monitors the patient’s progress during this time and conduct blood tests and other evaluations.

Follow-up care is required for one year after the surgery, but it may differ from patient to patient depending upon their condition and overall health.

Medications play an important role in recovery after liver transplantation. Other than immuno-suppressants to fight organ rejection, patient is prescribed several other medicines such as antibiotics, diuretics, vitamins, etc. to prevent infection and control blood pressure.

Some tests including lung biopsies, ultrasounds and abdominal scans, may also be recommended to assess the liver function and health of the patient post-surgery. The medications and tests are accompanied by a few dietary restrictions as obesity is a major concern after liver transplant surgery.

A well-balanced diet with restricted salt intake and active lifestyle should be maintained. It is important to follow the recommended post-transplantation plan to ensure good outcomes.

What are the benefits of Liver Transplant in India?

Transplanting a liver has various advantages or advantages. For people with liver failure issues who can undergo surgery, it is the best course of treatment. The main advantages of liver transplant include the following –

  • Improved standard of living.
  • Extended life span lower mortality rate and boost in energy levels.
  • Continuity in daily activities.

What is the liver transplant success rate in India?

For about 72% of the patients who undergo surgery, the post liver transplant life expectancy is at least five years.

The living donor method has a higher liver transplant survival rate, this is because with a living donor there is a shorter waiting period and the patient receives the transplant before his/her situation worsens.

The five-year survival rate of living donor liver transplants is about 78%. Approximately 90% of transplant recipients survive at least one year after the surgery. The long term success rate (i.e., 15-20 years) for liver transplants is 55-60%.

Most people are able to lead a normal, healthy and productive life after a liver transplant surgery. However, the outcome may vary from case to case depending on individual factors and is difficult to be generalised. Therefore, the success of liver transplant and long-term survival may vary with patients and on their particular situation.

What should I know about the rules and regulations for Liver Transplant Surgery in India?

Foreign patients, before opting for a liver transplant in India, should know about certain rules and regulations :

  • You cannot choose a donor from India. Instead, the living donor should be from your own country.
  • The approval process for transplantation will be faster if the donor is your close relative.
  • The blood group and compatibility factors must match for patient and donor.

Risks Associated with Liver Transplant Treatment

A liver transplant carries some risks, just like any other surgical treatment, which can be significant for some people.

  • Surgical risks like uncontrolled bleeding
  • Bile duct complications
  • Infections after surgery
  • Additional operations to address issues following surgery
  • Side effects from potent immunosuppressants, such as nausea and appetite loss, are common.
  • The newly transplanted liver is dysfunctional.

Adverse effects of anti-rejection medication

One will need drugs for the rest of life after a liver transplant to help prevent the body from rejecting the donor’s liver. Among the negative effects of these anti-rejection drugs are the following:

  • Bone thinning
  • Diabetes
  • Diarrhea
  • Headaches
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol

Anti-rejection medications boost the risk of infection since they weaken the immune system as part of their mechanism of action. To aid in the fight against infections, the doctor could prescribe medicine.

Frequently asked Questions (FAQs) about Liver Transplant Surgery in India

Q. What is the eligibility criteria for liver donation? 

The living donor must be

  • Officially 18-55 years old
  • Weighing 50-85 kg – should not be overweight or obese as they may have fatty livers
  • A Healthy family person willing to donate
  • Have blood group compatible with the patient
  • No medical conditions like liver disease, heart disease, diabetes or cancer

Q. What are the screening tests for prospective living donor?

A series of screening tests will be conducted before clearing a potential candidate for liver donation. The medical evaluation is necessary to ensure that there are no underlying medical conditions that would cause complications during the surgery or recovery.

  • Blood tests and serology tests including CBC, PT, LFTs, Serum creatinine, HBsAg, HCV antibody, HIV I and II.
  • Chest X ray
  • ECG – to check cardiovascular activity
  • Ultrasound of the abdomen – to check the size of the portion of the liver that can be safely donated.

The final approval is given by the surgeon after detailed analysis.

Q. What are the conditions which can prevent you from receiving liver transplant? 

People with additional medical conditions might not be suitable candidate for a liver transplantation. Some of the conditions that can be contra-indications for liver transplantation are:

  • Severe pulmonary hypertension
  • Metastatic cancer that has already spread outside of the liver
  • Systemic infection
  • Active or unacceptable risk of substance abuse – drugs and/or alcohol
  • History of non-compliance – the patient doesn’t stick to a strict medical regimen
  • A severe or uncontrolled psychiatric disease

Q. What is transplant rejection?

Your body’s immune system may recognize the transplanted liver as foriegn and launch a series of responses against it. This can cause damage to the transplanted liver. This is known as rejection and it can happen in spite of close matching of the donated organ and the transplant patient. Recipient are given immuno-suppresive or anti-rejection medications to prevent the immune system’s reaction to the new organ.

Q. Will I need to take anti-rejection medications all my life after liver transplant surgery?

Normally, yes. But the amount of anti-rejection medication that you have to take decreases after a few months from the surgery. However, some immuno-suppressive medicines are necessary for a long time and must be taken regularly and strictly as per the prescription without failure.

Q. Will be able to go back to my daily activities after liver transplant?

Yes, most definitely. After a successful liver transplant and complete recovery, you can resume your work and begin with physical activity. For some people, getting their full strength might take time, depending on the severity of the disease. Your doctor will guide you through the recovery and help you regain strength. Most people can return to work, take normal diet, resume sexual activity after recovery.

Dr. Surbhi Suden

Verified By Dr. Surbhi Suden

Dr. Surbhi Suden is one of the founders of Lyfboat and a doctor with a renowned name in the Medical tourism industry. She has been working with international patients since 2008 and is a deeply committed professional with a long term vision of transforming the current healthcare scenarios.

Best Liver Transplant Surgeons in India 

Liver transplantation is a complicated procedure and is carried out by a multidisciplinary team of specialists, including anesthetists, gastroenterologists, general surgeons, technicians, specialized transplant nurses and counselors. They all work together to ensure holistic and personalized care of the patient.

The best liver transplant specialists in India are highly qualified and trained from the top institutions around the world. They have extensive experience of performing all kinds of liver transplant procedures. The liver transplant surgeons in India are skilled in new-age surgical techniques like laparoscopy and minimally invasive procedures that makes post-surgery recovery easier for patients. 

Choosing the best liver transplant surgeon is a critical decision as the skills and experience of a specialist plays an important role in the success of a surgery. 

Here are some of the best Liver Transplantation surgeons in India:

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