Transplant Diary: St Helier

I am going to write this one down in a single post and all posts from now on will be written in real-time as each day goes by.

Monday 29th September

Well back at St Helier today and a little later than anticipated as my new driver, poor fella got held up in some really bad traffic on his way to get me. Blood test results aren’t too great though, Creatinine has jumped to 200 and the Doctor on duty is worried about this. He wants me to come back the following day, have another blood test and if the results jump up again, they will biopsy me again. Oh my god.

I have a ride home in a bouncy, bumpy ambulance mini-bus, every pot hole reverberates through my body and I wish God had given me built in shock absorbers. The driver is a nice witty chap and we have a great conversation along the way.

Glad to get home but worried about Tuesday….

Tuesday 30th September

I am picked up by a taxi that the Hospital has paid for! Getting to St Helier very early indeed. I am greeted by Vicky, a senior nurse who does my blood test personally. They don’t check anything else and the samples are whisked away to the lab.

My wait isn’t too bad, the Doctor comes over and says, “Follow me” without any real explanation and then tells me that I need a biopsy. He leads the way to the Beacon Ward where I am promptly put on a trip, yep another Cannula is pinned into the vein on my right hand and bound up with adhesive covering.

The Doctors cme round on their rounds and say they will be back to do the biopsy in half an hour. A nurse gives me a very nice cup of tea and I feel quite annoyed that I will need another biopsy and get quite upset about it all. Then I calm down.

One of the Doctors returns and informs me that she has had a change of heart, they won’t be performing a biopsy after all. Thank Christ for that and why put me on the bloody drip for the past half an hour. I was both cross and relieved. I was free to go home and accidentally disconnected my drip which hurt a little bit and blood trickled out. Thankfully cannulas have a a one-way valve built into them, so I wasn’t going to bleed to death! I have got very used to the sight of my own blood by now and am no longer phased by it.

Then came the next cock-up – My transport home had been cancelled and I had to wait from 12pm till 3pm before another lift could be arranged.

Please note this was nobody’s fault at all, it was simply confused by the fact that I had become an in-patient for about 1 hour and then discharged. The renal department had informed the transport department that I was going to remain in hospital for 7 hours or so.

I got home just before 5pm!

Wednesday 1st October

A smoother day! I see Dr Bendine and he is happy with my progress and I leave on time. Dr Bendine is a very good Doctor and one of their longest serving members of staff. I have heard some great things about him and his passion for Motorbikes. He is also a fellow Volvo driver apparently! He also decides to cut my Tacrolimus dosage to 7mg at 10am and 10pm.

Friday 3rd October

Thank christ, my creatinine is beginning to tumble downwards, as it hits 184, the right direction and we need to shed another 64 to hit the target of 120. I see Dr Andrews my original consultant whom I had last seen at Frimley Park at the start of September. It was great to see him and he is generally pleased with my progress and makes some further changes to my drugs plus adding a new one to help lower my blood pressure. My Tarcolimus has been cut to 6mg, twice a day and one of my other pills is cut in dosage too.

I also catch up with various people including my nurse from St Georges, Ty, Kirsty is back at work too after being on maternity leave and its great to see her too. Paul is there, the guy who shared a ward with me at St Georges. I also catch up with Lawrence who had his transplant on the same day as me (afternoon) and he is doing well, so is his brother who was his donor. Its great to talk to people who are going through the same things. One lady was a little worried about her medication and that she took it too late, I reassure her that she should be fine, so long as she took it and takes her next dosage at 10pm – That is what one of the doctor’s told me at St Georges!

I head for home at 1pm (always that time, as transport pick up at 1pm and 6pm each day).

See you Monday St Helier!

Finally….

Well that wraps up the diary for now, its been quite a task writing what I have done today, re-visiting those scary moments along the way and I think its helped me realise how much of a deal it has been but it has not been an ordeal! Its been by and by very smooth and the professionalism of the staff second to none!

Thanks to Marian, Kirsty, Christina (on holiday at the moment), Dr Bendine, Dr Sohil, Dr Andrews and Vicky.

I am now going to take a break for the afternoon, chill out etc. Will write another entry about how it all goes tomorrow. See you then!

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