Get your pre-transplant assessment at University Health from skilled liver transplant experts to determine if you are a candidate for transplantation.
What to Expect
Your pre-transplant liver evaluation process will be tiring, and you’ll get a lot of important information. Bring a family member or support person to help you remember everything.
Your liver evaluation will take place in San Antonio. You’ll participate in several exams and tests over three to four days. You won’t need to stay overnight in the hospital between tests. If you need help finding accommodations in San Antonio, ask our social worker. You must complete the evaluation and testing process to be considered for a liver transplant at University Health.
Look forward to meeting several members of our supportive care team and liver transplant team to talk about your condition and learn more about the liver transplant program at University Health Transplant Institute.
Pre-Transplant Evaluation and Tests
Depend on us to perform a series of thorough exams and medical tests. Your visits and evaluations will help us learn about your general health and discover other health problems that could affect transplant.
You’ll have very tight evaluation and testing appointment schedule. Be on time to all appointments. Notify your transplant coordinator ahead of time if you cannot attend an appointment.
You may have the following exams and tests:
- Cardiac stress test – Shows how well your heart works during physical activity
- Chest X-ray – Determines your lungs and heart are healthy
- Colonoscopy – Examines your rectum and colon for problems or changes in your bowel signaling cancer
- CT scan – Uses computerized image to show the size and shape of your liver and major blood vessels
- Echocardiogram – Uses ultrasound to show how well your heart pumps
- Electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) – Measures your heart’s electrical rhythms
- Liver biopsy – Removes a small liver tissue sample with a needle
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) – Uses large magnets and radio waves to see inside your abdomen to evaluate your liver and vessels
- Pulmonary function tests (PFTs) – Reveal how well your lungs are working
- Upper endoscopy – Looks at your esophagus and your stomach
Alcohol and Drug Screening
Expect an alcohol and drug screening. We test all patients with liver disease for alcohol and illegal drug use. That’s because these substances can cause further damage to the liver. If you test positive for alcohol and/or illegal drugs, you will not be considered for a liver transplant evaluation until you are drug-free for six months.
Transplant Medical Consults
Gain access to our multidisciplinary transplant care team during your evaluation. Our group of professionals considers all aspects of your health to support liver transplantation:
- Cardiology – Reviews your heart tests to make sure transplant surgery is safe for you
- Dental – Assesses the health of your teeth and gums to make sure you do not have an infection
- Dietary and nutrition – Helps you plan for proper food choices or restrictions to benefit your overall health and liver condition
- Mental health/psychiatric – Establishes your social, emotional, and physical needs and goals, an evaluation takes place if your transplant team recommends it
- Social work – Determines your and your family’s readiness for the transplant process; you must have your family member or support person with you at this consult
Evaluation and Test Results
Your results will determine if transplantation is the best treatment option for you, and if you’re a candidate for liver transplantation. Your pre-transplant coordinator will keep you informed of your selection status.