Cruisin with the Real"s

Cruisin with the Real"s
Joe and Nancy Grand Cayman 10-07

Loma Linda Medical Center

Loma Linda Medical Center
Where the magic happens........

Sunday, November 4, 2007

What Happened at our evaluation with the Transplant Team. And I do mean TEAM!

WELCOME TO THE SCARIEST DAY OF MY LIFE! Monday was here...October 29th, 2007

I was told that when meeting with the Transplant Team... That it was best to bring the important people involved in your health care and support team with you. There are lots of things beyond your current health situation that eventually come into play when THEY decide who ends up as a good candidate for receiving a new organ or not. As you know organs are in very short supply and they want to make CERTAIN that you will be able to accept and take care of the generous new organ you are lucky enough to receive.

I will go over some of the things that includes later but I do have to tell you it is an exhaustive list.

I brought with me, Joe of course, My wonderful friend Michelle (who I mentioned earlier, my nurse friend and rock), and myself. Mary would have been included also but she was on her way to Florida to spend family time there. She will also be a big part of my support team. We, including all of the Medical Team will be forming one team.

They had requested all of my medical records several weeks ago and called me to say they wanted to see me. First we met with the Nurse Practitioner who took an intensive background interview as well as a physical. Then the Dr came in. Dr Mendler. he had visited me in the hospital at the end of my stay. I do believe he is actually the reason that they sprung me.

What he said to me is actually sort of a blur. Michelle was taking notes feverishly. (good nurse that she is!) Basically what he said is YOU NEED A NEW LIVER AND YOU NEED IT FAST. He also said that with my meld scores staying so high that I would be near the top of the list as soon as I got on it so it could happen fairly fast. Especially because I have a common blood type and am otherwise fairly healthy. They are worried about my lung and heart functions as those *could* knock me off the list. Some of that depends on whether the conditions with those is happening because of my liver failure or not.

Who new you needed your liver so much or that it was responsible for so much stuff in your body?????

I was told that the actual surgery regarding a liver transplant is one of if not the most complex and difficult surgeries they do including, brain surgery and heart can take from 7-11 hours. Your liver is attached to EVERYTHING.

I was also told that if the surgery itself is successful and they can keep you from rejecting the new liver that it can be extremely successful and add many good years to your life.

Then we saw the Transplant Coordinator, Judith. She went over everything that we had to do next.....That was when my head really started spinning....

I have classes to attend. LOTS of specialists to see, plus, I have to get up to date on about 10 vaccinations, get a clearance from my dentist, gynecologist has to complete an entire work up including mammogram, the regular stuff and some more, heart dr, lung dr, nutritionist, financial counselor, social worker,classes, support groups.....are you tired yet? Thank God I feel well, I would hate to think I had to do all this if I was really feeling ill. Everything is about a 1 hour drive from our house with no traffic each way so I am trying to make several appt's at a time.

My little hospital stay was over $60,000. This is a $500,000. procedure not including aftercare.

Time for a pee break....have to go grab my container....LOL

1 comment:

Dave said...


Wow to see what we had to do just a month ago but now for you is wild. They had all the teams come visit us because of the truly dire situation we were in. We did it in about 36 hours after arriving in Texas. The entire week before the hospital in Hawai'i had done a great deal of pre-work so it could go so fast. Let me tell you from experience, your liver is VERY critical. From the completion of surgery it was only a matter of hours and everything in my wife started coming back (BTW my wifes surgery was 7ish hours). From about an inch from deaths door to the surgery to walking was just under 3 weeks. A good liver does wonders. Take care of yourself, review those notes OFTEN and trust your support team. If your husband and friends suggest you do something, just do it. They are on the outside of your body and can sometimes see better than you what's going on with you. Just some advice, do what you think is right. Take care and have faith.


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