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, May 25, 2008

The General Public's idea of Transplant

I am going to re post something a friend of mine with cirrhosis wrote.
The pictures above are livers with cirrhosis, the one in the middle is one of my favorite pics I call Dr's Peering, and third a healthy liver. This is an actual liver of another one of my friends with cirrhosis, his relatives liver. It was taken by her surgeon who was performing surgery on her intestines and he gave this to her.
Here are some thoughts on what Mr and Ms Public thinks transplant is from my fellow friend with cirrhosis:

The general public thinks that if you need a transplant, you are
automatically placed on the list for one. They believe that if you sign a donor
cards, that that means they will take your organ for someone else as soon as you
die. They tend to think that you are placed completely at the bottom of the list
and you have to wait your turn to reach the top of the list before you get a
donor organ. There is alot of misunderstandings that people need to have
corrected and come to know.

Just because you need a liver, doesn't mean you will be placed on the list.
You have to go through much testing and an evaluation process and seeing doctors
because the doctors decide if you will be placed on this list.

If you just sign a donor card, your organ will not be taken for someone
else because your family, in the USA, has the last saying whether it is or not.

(In California the Driver's license *pink dot* is not good enough. You need to go to to sign up for organ donation.)
Also, they have a say when the organ will be removed...when you are considered
to be brain dead and are hooked to machines or whether it will be after the
heart stops beating and the machines are removed temporarily.

When you are placed on the transplant are placed on that list
according to the blood work you have done that tells the doctor how your liver
is functioning and how well your kidneys are doing. You are placed on that list
according to how much time they determine you have left to live without being
given a donor organ. You don't start at the bottom and wait as you eventually
get to the top. The very sickest patients that have only a few days or weeks to
live are placed at the top of the list. The healthier ones who might become well
enough that they don't even have to have a transplant are placed at the bottom
of the list because they have a long time to live without needing a transplant.
The doctor also takes into consideration what other medical problems you have

Another misconception is that when you are called you will receive the
liver that day. This is also not true. You may go to the hospital and find out
that there was one other person before you and you are just there in case they
cannot have the transplant. In other words, you are really second on the list
and if they patient is too sick to go through the surgery or they cannot get in
touch with them or the doctors think that they won't be able to withstand the
long hours of the might get the organ. You may be called and by
the time you get to the hospital, the transplant team will be examining the
liver and find out that it isn't good enough to transplant inside of you. It may
have something wrong with it or it has been out of the body too long to take a
chance in transplanting it. You could start to think that the doctors are just
testing you to see if you will be there when they do call you and you will
receive the transplant. Could be.They will know then that you are serious about
wanting to live and they will try to be sure you do then.

The transplant process is a very organized, complicated and long surgery.
From the starting on the transplant list and the evaluation process to the care
and discharge and all the clinic appointments afterwards...all of it has been
set up in advanced. They adjust the care accordingly for each patient. Some
patients may have a transplant and be leaving the hospital in just a couple
weeks, other are not that fortunate...yet, they adjust and be sure that every
step forward will be permanent as possible and not temporary.

Part 1.............................................

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