The medical team at Renji Hospital with the family from Malaysia.

Shanghai surgeons save baby using part of mother's liver

May 27, 2024 Share:


A 20-month-old Malaysian girl had a liver transplant in Shanghai with surgeons using part of her mother's liver to save her life.

The baby had suffered jaundice since birth and had been diagnosed with blockages causing a build-up of bile. Though surgery can improve bile flow, most children end up needing a liver transplant.

She had an operation at just one month old but her condition failed to improve and her symptoms got worse. Experts in Malaysia recommended the family contact Shanghai's Renji Hospital, a world leader in pediatric liver transplants.

The family got in touch with Dr Xia Qiang, the hospital's president. After evaluation, Xia said the girl could have surgery, which should be conducted as soon as possible.

The family appealed for donations through local media and raised enough money in just three days, including a donation from the country's prime minister.

Shanghai surgeons save baby using part of mother's liver

A report in Malaysian media of the prime minister's donation.

Renji Hospital helped the family make arrangements to travel to Shanghai, including visas.

The surgery on April 26 was a success, with the mother's liver split into two parts, one of which was transplanted into the girl's body.

Both recovered well and the baby was transferred from the ICU to an ordinary ward five days after surgery.

Shanghai surgeons save baby using part of mother's liver

The girl was transferred to an ordinary ward just five days after surgery.

The family are now back home after weeks of treatment and rehabilitation.

Renji is the world's biggest children's liver transplant center and holds the record of the highest number of annual surgeries for 10 consecutive years. Its patients' long-term survival is also among the best in the world.

So far it has carried out over 3,400 pediatric liver transplants with a five-year survival rate of 94 percent. Renji Hospital doctors have been to the University Malaya Medical Centre to guide them through four liver transplant surgeries and help establish a professional medical team for such procedures. The two parties also reached an agreement on international training projects.

As one of the leading hospitals included in the city's international medical tourism scheme, Renji said it welcomes expat patients with its high medical capabilities, strong innovative demands, international service experience and competitive prices. The cost of a pediatric liver transplant in Shanghai is a fifth of that in the United States, hospital officials said.

Shanghai surgeons save baby using part of mother's liver


Author: Cai Wenjun