Monday, March 19, 2012

Post-Transplant

It has been almost 20 days since the kidney transplant.  I had the pleasure of getting my staples out 3 days ago...all 20 of them.  My transplant coordinator took them out.  She told me that my scar is quite small compared to others she has seen, but at the same time my torso is quite small. I'm still surprised at the fact that my surgeon was able to cram my brother's kidney into my stomach, considering the fact that my brother is 6'2 and VERY large as he works out quite a bit.

I did psyche myself out for a huge amount of pain.  It's not like I haven't had staples removed before..but I did still prepare myself for something much worse than it was.  My coordinator told me that it wouldn't hurt much since the nerves in that area were cut along with the incision.  She was right; except for a the last few staples close to the bottom of the incision, I barely felt anything. This really helped in terms of sleeping at night..I don't like to be limited in terms of whether I sleep on my right, my left, etc.  Also, with the staples in, the incision was sooo itchy! Now that they're out, the itch has not completely disappeared, but it is a LOT better.  My coordinator told me that there's an old wives tale that states that itchiness= time to remove the staples.  I always thought that it meant that the wound was healing so it will soon be time to remove the staples...who knows!

I am still quite sore.  I'm also kind of afraid to over stretch.  Being afraid to stretch has made me realize how often I probably used to stretch pre-surgery LOL.

I'm also working on gaining some more weight.  Pre-surgery, I was 52kg (115lbs). Now, I'm 48kg (106lbs). I will admit that my appetite hasn't quite gotten to what it was pre-surgery.  I fully expected to be on large doses of prednisone which would in turn cause at least a moderate amount of weight gain.  This assumption was based on the experience of a friend of mine who had also gotten a transplant, though it was a deceased donor kidney.  Perhaps because I had a living related donor, those high amounts of prednisone were not needed. Right after the surgery, I was put on 55mg of prednisone. By the time I was discharged from the hospital 7 days later, that dose was dropped all the way down to 5mg, the same dose I was on pre-surgery.

I'm thankful that I did not have to be on a large dose for long, especially with my history of having high blood glucose readings while on high doses. I will admit...I was looking forward to getting some "weight on my bones". I am confident that much of my weight loss was muscle mass.  As I get up and about more and gain some of that muscle back, I'm sure the weight will come back on, and hopefully a bit more. I'd prefer to be about 54.5-57kg (120-125lbs).

I'm still going to the hospital 3 times a week for blood work. Thankfully there haven't been any major concerns in my blood work. I have an appointment next Monday.  If all is well, I will be allowed to go to my local blood clinic to get my bloods drawn as opposed to going all the way to the hospital, which is sometimes a 30-40 minute drive depending on traffic.

Well that's about it for now.  Here's to keeping with the positive news! :)

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