Liver Biopsy Prep

With a liver biopsy (BYE-op-see), the physician is able to examine a small piece of tissue from your liver for signs of damage or disease. This procedure involves using a special needle to remove tissue from the liver. The physician decides to do a liver biopsy after tests suggest that the liver does not work properly. For example, a blood test might show that your blood contains higher than normal levels of liver enzymes or too much iron or copper. An x-ray could suggest that the liver is swollen. Looking at liver tissue itself is the best way to determine whether the liver is healthy.


You will need to report to Center 8 at Hartford Hospital, 80 Seymour Street, Hartford. You can go into the main entrance of the hospital, ask at the information desk. Please do not eat or drink anything after midnight the night before the procedure.

You will need to have a blood test done 7 days prior to having the procedure. You will receive instructions concerning your diet and medications.

YOU WILL NOT BE PERMITTED TO DRIVE AFTER THIS PROCEDURE! Make arrangements for someone to take you home.

Please refrain from aspirin, aspirin products, and anti-inflammatory medications at least 7 days prior to the procedure. Notify your doctor as soon as possible if you are taking a blood thinner such as Coumadin, aspirin, or Plavix.

Your stay will be approximately 5 hours. Bring a light snack and reading material.

Arrange for someone to pick you up on call or wait for you. You will not be able to drive home.

You will be observed for several hours before you go home. Written instructions will be given to you when you leave.

If you have any questions, please contact your physician.