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Other complications after a liver transplantOOther complications after a liver transplantOther complications after a liver transplantEnglishTransplant;GastrointestinalTeen (13-18 years)LiverDigestive systemProcedures;Conditions and diseasesTeen (13-18 years)NA2017-11-30T05:00:00Z000Flat ContentHealth A-Z

 

 

Other complications after a liver transplant2668.00000000000Other complications after a liver transplantOther complications after a liver transplantOEnglishTransplant;GastrointestinalTeen (13-18 years)LiverDigestive systemProcedures;Conditions and diseasesTeen (13-18 years)NA2017-11-30T05:00:00Z000Flat ContentHealth A-Z<figure> <img alt="Teen girl looking at ground" src="https://assets.aboutkidshealth.ca/AKHAssets/TTC_Trans2_S7_2_4_PBR.jpg" /> </figure> <p>Some complications after transplant do not fall into any set category. As a result, we call them “miscellaneous” complications. They include:</p><ul><li>medication side effects</li><li>cancer</li><li>plasma cell-rich rejection (de novo autoimmune hepatitis).</li></ul><h2>Medication side effects</h2><p>Transplant medications can cause mild or severe side effects, depending on each patient.</p><p>In general, common side effects include:<br></p><ul><li>high blood pressure (which you can reduce with a <a href="/Article?contentid=2740&language=English">low-sodium diet</a> and medications)</li><li>tremors (shaking of the hands)</li><li>electrolyte (chemical) imbalances in the blood, for example low magnesium or high potassium levels</li><li>kidney problems</li><li>stomach upset</li><li>diabetes, or high blood sugar levels (very rare, caused by higher doses of prednisone and/or tacrolimus). If diabetes does occur, it usually lasts only a short time. You can control it with changes in <a href="/Article?contentid=2737&language=English">diet</a> or, sometimes, injections of <a href="/Article?contentid=1728&language=English">insulin</a>. Diabetes is often temporary and improves when prednisone is stopped.</li></ul><p>As time passes after your surgery, the transplant team will slowly lower your dose of immunosuppressants. This will decrease the risk of experiencing side effects.</p><p>It is important to tell your doctor if you are experiencing any unusual side effects, as they may be able to change your medications or doses.</p><h2>Cancer</h2><p>Long-term use of immunosuppressants, which you will need to take after your transplant, increases your risk of developing different types of cancer later in life. For example, all patients have a risk of developing skin cancer and females have a greater risk of developing cervical cancer. </p><p>All transplant patients should take steps to prevent cancer, for example by wearing <a href="/Article?contentid=2752&language=English">sunscreen to protect the skin​</a> and talking with the medical team about what routine checks you should have. You can also check out our video about how to <a href="/Article?contentid=2752&language=English">examine your skin</a> for changes​.</p><h2>Plasma cell-rich rejection (de novo autoimmune hepatitis)<br></h2><p>Your new liver can sometimes become inflamed (irritated and/or swollen) after transplant. One type of inflammation is called plasma cell-rich rejection (also known as de novo autoimmune hepatitis). Autoimmune means your immune system is reacting to your body and causing inflammation.</p><p>The first sign of plasma cell-rich rejection is usually an elevated level of antibodies during liver function tests, or LFTs. If the liver team sees this, they will decide to do a liver biopsy. If the biopsy confirms the plasma cell-rich rejection, your healthcare team will discuss the condition with you and give you medications (usually <a href="/Article?contentid=2710&language=English">prednisone</a> to start) to treat it.</p><p>If the biopsy confirms de novo autoimmune hepatitis, your health care team will discuss the condition with you and give you medications (usually prednisone to start) to treat it.<br></p>