Find out what to expect when you come to hospital for your appointment.

Before your appointment

We usually see patients within four to six weeks of receiving their referral. Urgent appointments will be seen within two weeks.

You are welcome to bring a relative, close friend or carer with you to your appointment.

Please follow any written instructions you have been sent about preparing for your appointment, particularly if you are having any scans or other procedures.

If we need to perform a liver biopsy you will receive a telephone call from one of our nurses explaining the procedure and how to prepare for it. The need for a biopsy and other tests will be explained in the clinic prior to any procedure being carried out.

Remember to bring any medications you are taking for your liver or any other conditions along with:

  • your full address and telephone number(s)
  • your appointment card and appointment letter
  • your GP’s name and address
  • a full list of any medications you are currently taking
  • money to pay for any prescriptions, or an exemption card
  • a list of questions you may want to ask your consultant

During your appointment

Please note that we are a teaching hospital, so medical students may be present for some appointments. If you do not wish to have them in the room please let the nurse or doctor know and the students will be asked to step outside.

At your first appointment you will see one of our hepatology (liver) doctors who will take a detailed history of your symptoms and coordinate the necessary investigations to establish a diagnosis as soon as possible.

This is likely to include several different scans and blood tests, and may also include a liver biopsy. Your treatment options will depend on the diagnosis and could include tablets and other medication, surgery, liver ablation to destroy a tumour, or simple monitoring with advice on lifestyle changes to improve your health. These will be discussed with you in detail at your appointment.

After your appointment

After the initial appointment and relevant investigations you may be discharged back for monitoring and management by your GP.

If we find more advanced liver disease you will be asked to attend regular follow-up appointments with our liver team. Depending on your condition, this will either be in our general liver clinic or one of our specialist clinics.