Author(s): Tribeni Medhi 1 , Jayasri Devi

ABSTRACT: CONTEXT: Hepato cellular carcinoma (HCC) results in between 2.5 lakhs to 1million deaths globally per annum. Liver transplantation nowadays is a well accepted treatment option for end-stage liver disease and acute liver failure. AIMS: Keeping this concept in view, a study was conducted in the Guwahati Zone of Northeast India, to compare the histomorphological features of the human liver in different age groups. SETTING AND DESIGN: Apparently healthy livers were obtained from 21 subjects on whom medicolegal post-mortems had been performed. Their ages varied from newborn to 90 years. Subjects were divided into 3 groups. 7 specimens were taken from each group. (1) Pediatric (2) Adult (3) Old age. METHODS AND MATERIALS: In all the above age groups, immediately after removal of the livers, they were washed in normal saline, dried with blotting paper and weighed in an electronic weighing machine. Sections of liver were fixed, processed, cut and stained with Harris Haematoxylin and Eosin stain. RESULTS: The liver loses weight from 50 years onwards. There appears to be racial and environmental differences in the change in liver weight in old age. Autopsy studies show a diminution of nearly 46% in liver weight between the 3rd and 10th decades of life. The liver decreases in size with age. The hepatocytes are radially disposed in the liver lobule. They are piled up, forming a layer one cell thick (except in young children) in a fashion similar to the bricks of a wall. These plates are directed from the periphery of the lobule to its centre and anastomose freely forming a complex labyrinthine and sponge-like structure. CONCLUSIONS: From the findings in the present study it can be concluded that: 1. Nowadays, the measurement of liver volume has gained practical use in relation to liver transplantation. 2. We have compared the histomorphology of adult liver with a child. The findings in both the groups are very similar. This feature is important, since in pediatric liver transplantation, a portion of an adult liver can be used for an infant or small child. 3. The present study has open scopes for further research with more advanced techniques

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