Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Just some more info - Wednesday October 21, 2009

Wouldn't you just know...I've got a cold. 

I've been pretty healthy (and I know that's a relative statement!) since I got out of the hospital in May.  I've been on a good amount of steroids since then and I know that has really helped.  I woke up yesterday and was pretty much out of breath.  As the day progressed I was still short of breath and last night I started really feeling sort of nasty.  I ended up trying to sleep in the recliner because lying down in the bed was hard for my breathing.  As many of you probably know from my 3:00 am e-mail I didn't get much sleep last night.

This morning - when my throat hurt and my chest hurt - I called Khara and the answer to my question was " No, do not go to the Fitness Center for rehab".  They don't want me getting anyone else sick.  I was started on anti-biotics (I always keep them on hand now) and I'm supposed to call tomorrow with my update.  If I start running a fever I have to call right away.  When I'm feeling "normal" I forget what a tenuous hold I have on health.  My frail little lungs get wimpy pretty easily.  But that's one of the reasons I'm on the transplant list.

Speaking of transplant list, I think this would be a great time to talk about "Dry Runs".

A dry run is when we get the phone call to come to the hospital and we've called everyone and headed to the hospital and have waited around and then - often several hours later - we are told to go on back home because there is a problem with the lungs and there won't be a transplant today.

I imagine that must be very hard to go through but the staff explained that it does happen to a percentage of the transplant patients.  The main reason would be because Duke makes the decision to accept the lungs of the donor based on a phone call from other people.  Those people provide test results (discussed yesterday) and blood type and size and I'm sure different specific stuff I don't even know about.  When Duke says they want the lungs, then someone from Duke goes to get them at the same time they are calling the patient to come into the hospital.  This is important because they want the patient to be prepped and ready to go when those lungs arrive at the hospital so there is minimal time out of the body.

When the lungs arrive at Duke then the docs take a look at them and do other tests (I'm guessing).  At that point if the surgeon doesn't feel they are going to be OK he will cancel the procedure.  He doesn't want bad lungs replacing bad lungs.  Now that does make sense to me.

So the reason for this discussion is just a heads up that that might happen.  I'm hoping it doesn't but we need to be open to the possibility.  Going back to rest now.

Love to all,
Lee, Wendy and Missy

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