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Liver Biopsy

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LIVER BIOPSY DEFINITION

In a liver biopsy, a small tissue of the liver is taken out for further evaluation and examination for any signs of damage or disease.

LIVER BIOPSY PURPOSE

If you are seen with possible liver damage, you may be requested with a liver biopsy so a tissue of your liver will be examined under a microscope. This procedure is done when your blood tests and other imaging techniques suggest that there is a possible damage to your liver or that you have a serious liver condition. A liver biopsy is done not only to single out the problem but also to help the physician develop an appropriate treatment plan.

LIVER BIOPSY RISKS

A liver biopsy is generally a safe procedure. But just like other medical procedures, you may be exposed to risks of pain and discomfort at the biopsy site, bleeding, infection, and accidental injury to a nearby organ. Your symptoms of risks or complications may be mild or severe. In any case, you should consult a medical professional regarding your symptoms to ensure that it will no go out of hand.
LIVER BIOPSY
Image: LIVER BIOPSY

LIVER BIOPSY PREPARATION REQUIRED

Before a liver biopsy, you will have several appointments with your doctor to discuss what you should and should not do as well as what to expect during the procedure. You may also be asked to stop certain medications, take certain blood tests, and follow a diet plan. Make sure to follow your doctor’s instructions to evade any possible complications.

LIVER BIOPSY PROCEDURE

This medical test is done in the hospital. It is done in several ways but the most common is one where a biopsy needle is inserted through the abdomen and into the liver to remove a small piece of liver tissue. Other types of the procedure are transjugular, where the vein in the neck is involved and laparoscopic, where an incision on the abdomen is made.

LIVER BIOPSY COMPLICATIONS

Some complications of liver biopsy include persistent pain and bleeding. Infection on the abdominal cavity or the bloodstream happens rarely but it is a common possibility.

LIVER BIOPSY SIDE EFFECTS

If you have had a transjugular liver biopsy, some side effects may include hematoma in the neck, voice problems, injury to facial nerves, and accidental injury to the lung.

LIVER BIOPSY RESULTS

A pathologist will examine the liver tissue taken out and will look at it for possible damage or disease. The examination may last for a few days up to a week before you can discuss the results with your doctor through a follow-up visit.
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