One of the things that a transplant patient needs to get used to are the bumps in the road on the way to recovery after surgery. Sometimes they’re speed bumps, sometimes potholes. The body has undergone a tremendous shock, adjusting to life with a foreign organ, massive amounts of medication initially, and a host of other things that need getting used to. Such was the case with me last week.
I go every Thursday (for now) to the transplant clinic at Strong Hospital in Rochester, where I had my surgery. So while there last week, the unexpected happened. Apparently I was a bit dehydrated, and combined with the large amount of immunosuppression I’m on caused a strain on my kidneys. My main anti-rejection medication, Tacrolimus (Prograf), is known to have an effect on the kidneys. Combine that with the two other anti-rejection meds, and things need to be monitored closely, and adjusted down when needed. It was enough however to put me in the hospital for two days to “tweak,” – as my surgeon says – my kidney function.
The last thing that I wanted was to be back in the hospital after making progress at home. I was pretty upset, but I really didn’t have a choice. They didn’t want things to progress to the point where I would have been even worse. the problem was there were no beds on the transplant floor, so I had to spend the night in the ED until one opened up at about 3am. Oh joy. So multiple liters of IV fluid over two days, and a medication change later, I was sent home with orders to drink as much water as I could stand to avoid dehydration.
On the good news front, my appetite, which had been stalled for some time, has come roaring back. I seem to be hungry all the time, which is a good thing since I’m still almost 50 lbs underwweight. It does feel good to have my appetite back to where I was used to it.
So, life goes on, and hopefully, no more bumps.