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Liver Transplant: the Ins and Outs

Learn about the science behind having a liver transplant with this free online course from the Centre for Liver Research.

8,528 enrolled on this course

Liver Transplant: the Ins and Outs
  • Duration3 weeks
  • Weekly study3 hours
  • LearnFree
  • Extra BenefitsFrom $74Find out more

Learn about the fascinating field of liver transplantation

This course covers the history of liver transplantation, from early experiments in the late 1960s to exciting new technological advances in organ preservation happening today. You will find out why there is such an increasing global need for liver transplants, and look at the science behind the operation and the drugs used to prevent organ rejection. We will look at the unique biology of the liver, explaining how one donor organ can help two patients in need, and how some people can eventually manage without any anti-rejection medication.

The Educators won’t be able to join the discussions or respond to individual comments in this course run, but the course encourages a strong learning community. Discussion is an important part of this course – supporting other learners, sharing your own experience and knowledge, and listening to new perspectives. We hope that you will enjoy interacting with and learning from each other in this way. Don’t forget to comment, reply to other learners and ‘like’ comments.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 22 seconds DR.

Skip to 0 minutes and 22 seconds PATRICIA LALOR: Hello, I’m Doctor Patricia Lalor, and I’m a senior lecturer at the Centre for Liver Research at the University of Birmingham.

Skip to 0 minutes and 29 seconds PROFESSOR PHIL NEWSOME: My name is Professor Phil Newsome, and I am director for the Centre for Liver Research and a consultant hepatologist at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. DR.

Skip to 0 minutes and 39 seconds ZANIA STAMATAKI: My name is Dr. Zania Stamataki, and I am a Royal Society Research Fellow based in the Centre for Liver Research at the University of Birmingham. DR.

Skip to 0 minutes and 48 seconds PATRICIA LALOR: Liver disease is a growing global problem, and many of you may know someone who has died from end-stage liver failure or liver cancer. Here in the UK, deaths from liver disease have increased dramatically in recent years. And it seems that we are following the trend seen in America where fatty liver conditions are the leading cause of chronic liver disease. Liver disease often doesn’t present with any outward signs or symptoms until the damage is severe, at which point, the only treatment option may be having another transplant.

Skip to 1 minute and 19 seconds PROFESSOR PHIL NEWSOME: Here in Birmingham, we have one of the largest liver transplant centres in Europe and perform around 200 liver transplants per year. We also have a centre of excellence in the study of the science behind liver disease here at the University of Birmingham. We are, therefore, uniquely placed to try and teach you about the science behind liver transplantation. We will talk to the surgeons who perform the operations, the clinical staff who care for the patients, as well as the transplant coordinators who play a key role in helping source and allocate the donor organs. Finally, we’ll also hear from the patients themselves and hear about their experiences with the transplant procedure. DR.

Skip to 1 minute and 59 seconds ZANIA STAMATAKI: When first conceived, the concept of liver transplantation struggled to convince liver doctors that it was going to catch on. Nowadays, liver transplantation is the only lifesaving treatment option for patients with end-stage liver disease. During this free course, we will explore the major issues that fascinate us. How is it possible to take an organ like the liver for one person and have it survive inside another? Have you ever wondered about the ethics of organ donation and how organs should be allocated? Did you know you can use a liver from one person to supply donor material for two recipients? And why is there such an increasing demand for donor livers for transplantation?

Skip to 2 minutes and 43 seconds And how can new advances increase the number of organs which are available? DR.

Skip to 2 minutes and 47 seconds PATRICIA LALOR: If you have an interest in liver disease, or transplantation surgery, or if you’re interested in the biology behind organ transplantation and your immune system, sign up for our free course.

What topics will you cover?

Explore the major issues surrounding liver transplant

You will hear from the surgeons who perform the liver transplant operation; the clinical staff who care for the patients; the liver transplant coordinators who help to source and allocate donor organs; and patients themselves about their experiences of liver transplant.

During this course, we explore the major issues that fascinate us:

  • How is it possible to take an organ like the liver from one person and have it survive inside another?

  • Have you ever wondered about the ethics of organ donation, and how organs should be allocated?

  • Why is there such an increasing demand for donor livers for transplantation?

  • And how can new advances increase the numbers of organs that are available for liver transplant?

Learn with experts from one of Europe’s largest liver transplant centres

The course is created by experts from the Centre for Liver Research at the University of Birmingham and the nearby Queen Elizabeth Hospital. This is one of Europe’s largest liver transplant centres, performing over 200 liver transplantations each year.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Apply new knowledge of the structure and function of the liver to understand the signs of disease.
  • Assess the major reasons for liver transplantation.
  • Compare the stages of the operation to remove a diseased liver and insert a new one.
  • Collect information about the history of liver transplantation and key transplant pioneers.
  • Apply knowledge to understand how patients are cared for after the operation.
  • Assess future alternatives to transplantation.

Who is the course for?

The course will be of interest to anyone who is captivated by human biology, transplantation, surgery or your immune system.

Who will you learn with?

Trish Lalor is a Senior Lecturer and research scientist in the Centre for Liver Research at The University of Birmingham.

Zania Stamataki is a Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellow at the University of Birmingham School of Immunity and Infection.

Who developed the course?

University of Birmingham

The University of Birmingham is a public research university, consistently listed as a leading UK university and ranked among the top 100 in the world.

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