Timucin Taner, M.D., Ph.D.: The liver is amazing. It is the only organ in the body that can regenerate to that capacity.
Julie Heimbach, M.D.: So when someone donates part of their liver, it's truly remarkable in that a period of weeks, it continues to regenerate very rapidly.
John Poterucha, M.D.: Most of our living donors have a relationship with the potential recipient, and if that recipient's priority for a deceased donor liver is not high then their only option to get a transplant faster is from a living donor.
Timucin Taner, M.D., Ph.D.: It gives an opportunity for loved ones to do the best for the patient who is need of a liver transplant. It provides the ultimate gift of life.
Julie Heimbach, M.D.: I think it's important for a potential donor to know that it is a big operation that they need to allow themselves adequate time to recover from that operation.
Timucin Taner, M.D., Ph.D.: The long term risks are usually much less. People might have hernias or bulges in their abdominal wall and overall risk for having a life-threatening complication in this operation is about 1 in 300.
Julie Heimbach, M.D.: Liver transplant at Mayo is somewhat unique in that the team is very connected.
John Poterucha, M.D.: I think we have the luxury of having it under one roof.
Timucin Taner, M.D., Ph.D.: It takes a village to transplant somebody and that includes the patient, the loved ones of the patient, the whole Mayo team.
Julie Heimbach, M.D.: We would encourage if you have questions, we would have the opportunity for you to talk with some of our donors who've already gone through the process.
Timucin Taner, M.D., Ph.D.: We have three different facilities in three different parts of the country with excellent outcomes and large liver transplant programs. It's one of the biggest living donor liver transplant programs in the country. One of the longest-running ones in the country. It's been running for 20 years now.
John Poterucha, M.D.: We've had liver transplant recipients run marathons, have children, they go back to work.
Timucin Taner, M.D., Ph.D.: You see that's the best part of our job. Seeing them at the end of the transplant with everything turned around and living a healthy life.