Hong Kong’s first live dual liver transplant was successfully carried out at the Queen Mary Hospital and involved a Macau father and his two daughters.
The recipient, 59-year-old Cheng Chi-meng, underwent the operation after being transferred to Queen Mary Hospital in Pok Fu Lam earlier this month.
The patient, who’d suffered acute liver failure, was in a coma and may have died if he hadn’t undergone the transplant operation within a week. Cheng’s two daughters, aged 22 and 23, had matching blood types but their livers were both too small for their father.
Surgeons were able to form a whole liver using donated parts from the two daughters, SCMP reports. A team of doctors joined the left and right halves to make the full liver before transplanting it into Chen’s body.
Traditionally, the two halves would be placed in the body separately, although the operation would take twice as long. The two procedures took only 55 minutes.
“Dual-liver transplant is an ethical problem in the medical world and we did not make the decision easily because it involved three people’s lives,” said Dr. Lo Chung-mau. “If one donor is enough, we will absolutely choose that way. Most ideally, if enough livers are donated by the deceased, we don’t have to bother any healthy people.”