Saturday, February 17, 2007

FAQs of transplant

(For those of you lucky enough to view my previous 'Saturday' blog which I posted earlier, don't be confused, I'll put that back on tomorrow)

I have been asked many questions about my lung transplant since...well my transplant(!). A lot of the time the questions are ones I have heard before, and generally relate to things you don't get told when reading 'A guide to transplant'. So I decided (two nights ago) to write a selection of the most common questions I get asked. Unfortunately my beautifully informative blog got lost in cyberspace and in the process of throwing the computer out the window(!) I got tired and went to bed. Please, if you have any questions (weird or wonderful) post them in my guestbook (anon or otherwise) and I will try to answer them. Don't be embarrassed if they are strange, the idea is try to inform people after all. So here are a few anyhoo:

Was it sore?

No. Honestly for me it wasn't. I had an epidural (the thing that Mums in labour can get) which numbed a large portion of the torso. Everybody is different though, and this was my personal experience. The pain medication is excellent, and really worked a treat.

How long were you on the Ventilator/What was ICU like?

I stayed on the Ventilator about 24hours or so. I was asleep for all of that, and when I 'came around' I demanded the thing be removed, as although it is very helpful, it doesn't feel nice because its in your throat, which isn't pleasant.

ICU was OK, the nurses were great. Because of morphine I didn't sleep at all, but the nurses kindly chatted with me at length. Most of that time I was in awe that I had just had a transplant. I stayed in ICU from Sunday to Tuesday.

Do you have a massive scar?

The scar itself is very thin and neat. It runs from one side of my chest to the other, following my bra line carefully, so wearing low tops and swimming togs isn't a problem.

Did you notice a difference immediately (from old lungs to new ones)?

I was expecting to come off the ventilator and take a really deep breath which didn't happen. Instead it was small changes like the sound and strength of my voice as well as the length of my sentences and the complete LACK of cough! Then when I was well enough to go to the gym, I noticed the huge growth in energy which was fab.

Did you cry loads?? (I'm not sure if this person meant from pain?!) The enormity of such an operation can take a huge toll on your emotions, as can the medication. There were times, which the smallest of things could set you off, but as a whole, I didn't need THAT many kleenexes really!

Are you on LOADS of medications?

I'm on a few! But about the same as I was before transplant. I take my anti-rejections twice a day, and then I take my others (5) with my breakfast. So overall...I would say no.

I've probably written a book, but if you have any more, just holler. My guestbook also has the option of commenting to the Admin (me) so your comment won't be viewable to the public.

This blog is also in my RedBook blog too!