SINGAPORE: In a heartbreaking plea for help, a desperate Singaporean recently took to social media to search for a liver donor for his 68-year-old father, who is battling end-stage liver cancer.

Posting on r/askSingapore, the man shared that his father has about 3-5 months left and that the chances of him being able to undergo transplant surgery are decreasing as time passes.

He wrote, “Due to the severity of his condition, he is unable to go through the deceased liver donor process and can only get one from the altruistic liver donation process.”

“The family is looking for donors that are: Weight: 80 kg–100 kg; BMI: Around 30-35; Blood type: Preferably O+; Age: 21–55; No prior liver diseases or major health issues.”

The man said that potential family members had already undergone tests and were found to be unfit for a variety of reasons, the most common of which was insufficient liver volume.

With a sense of urgency and hope, the man made a heartfelt appeal to those who are open to donating to get in touch. 

He urged them to reach out by sending an email to or by directly contacting him on Reddit. His username is spodurmun.

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To help spread the word, he also asked Singaporeans on Reddit to share his post with their family and friends.

In need of potential donors
byu/spodurmun inaskSingapore

In the comments section, a few Redditors expressed their empathy and extended their heartfelt wishes to the man and his family.

One individual said, “I feel for you and wish your family the best.”

Another commented, “Best of luck OP!”

A third individual also asked if the family would be able to cover all expenses before, during, and after the transplant, including miscellaneous expenses such as supplements, any caregiver if needed, additional costs required for potential infection/complications from the transplant, loss of income, hospitalisation leave used up and unpaid leave required, and expenses from follow up visits.

Living-Donor Liver Donation in Singapore

As per the data released by the National Organ Transplant Unit, an organ donation and tissue bank in Singapore, there has been a significant decline in the number of living-liver donor transplants. 

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Specifically, the statistics reveal a drop from 16 such procedures in 2022 to just 7 in the subsequent year of 2023. 

Their data also indicated that patients who received transplants from deceased donors in 2023 faced an average waiting time of 22.3 months.

Considering that individuals with end-stage liver cancer typically have a life expectancy of six months or less, this situation often leaves them with no choice but to seek a donation from a living donor, be it a family member or a compassionate individual.

How it can help patients with end-stage liver disease

According to UPMC, a medical website based in the US, getting a liver from a living donor is crucial for saving the lives of people with end-stage liver disease. This helps cut down the wait time for a transplant and ensures the new liver starts working immediately after surgery, leading to better overall outcomes.

Also, living-liver donors and recipients can work with the hospital to schedule their surgery, picking a time that suits everyone. This speeds up the transplant process, prevents the recipient’s condition from worsening, and gets them the help they need faster.

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Additionally, since recipients receive a portion of a healthy donor’s liver, they typically experience improved long-term outcomes and faster recovery times.

What donors should know

As for the donor, doctors, medical professionals, and multiple studies have guaranteed that the liver can regrow to its original volume. 

Post-donation, as much as 30 percent of the liver can regenerate to its original size. Within two to four weeks, the donor’s liver function returns to normal, and over the course of about a year, the liver gradually regenerates to nearly its original size.

Furthermore, the recipient’s insurance usually covers the entire donation process, including pre-transplant evaluations, surgery, hospital recovery, and post-transplant care.

Still, donors should be wary of the potential side effects of the transplant ahead of the surgery. 

According to Hopkins Medicine, a platform that shares medical knowledge, potential risks of liver transplant surgery include pain and discomfort, nausea, wound infection, pneumonia, bile leakage or bile duct problems, blood clots, and bleeding.

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