The liver is a large organ situated just below the ribs. It is responsible for several functions in the body such as digestion, fighting infections, purifying the blood of harmful chemicals, and as storage for nutrients and energy. Several medical conditions may be connected with the improper functioning of the liver. When blood tests, ultrasounds or x-rays do not help diagnose the problem, a liver biopsy may be required. A liver biopsy is a procedure involves removing a small piece of the liver. This piece of the liver is then examined using a microscope and analyzed for damage or degeneration.
Types of Liver Biopsy Procedures
A liver biopsy can evaluate the extent of liver damage and determine the type of treatment required. There are different procedures for liver biopsy that can be used according to the symptoms exhibited. The three main types of liver biopsy procedures are percutaneous, transvenous, and laparoscopic liver biopsies. In all three procedures, a piece of the liver tissue is removed using a needle. The difference occurs in the way the needle is inserted in each procedure. All three types of liver biopsies use ultrasound and imaging to determine the best spot to insert the needle and extract the piece of tissue.
During a liver biopsy procedure, the patient is required to lie down and rest their right hand above their head. Using a local anesthetic, the doctor will insert the biopsy needle through a small incision in the abdomen. During the extraction of the liver tissue, the patient will be asked to exhale and hold his breath. This is accomplished very quickly though at times multiple insertions and a number of samples may be required.
Procedure Risks, Code and Pain
One liver biopsy procedure risk is bleeding. To prevent this, patients are required to lie down on their right side for up to two hours after the test. Other risks and complications of a liver biopsy include infection, puncture of internal organs and the possible spreading of cancer cells. Liver biopsy recovery often takes two to three days and during this time, any type of heavy exercise or strenuous activity should be avoided.
Liver biopsy procedure pain and soreness can be treated with over-the-counter pain medications. However, make sure that these medicines do not interfere with the normal blood clotting process. It is also important to find out the liver biopsy procedure code before the procedure to ensure proper documentation. Your doctor will be able to help you with this.
Submitted by N on December 7, 2011 at 11:23