Take Care of Your New Organs!


It is common for post transplant patients to forget their scheduled tests and medical therapies; especially after a few years of being healthy. However, it seems the important has been understated by some health professionals.

Years ago, I remember the transplant hospital explaining to us the importance of organ transplant recipients to check their temperature, blood pressure and spirometry every day. It is through those three main daily tests that patients are signaled early on about some problem that may be occurring.

Over the year though, people tend to forget to do these tests or get bored with doing them every day. Although it doesn’t hurt to go a few days or even a few weeks without performing these medical tests at home, it is important to do them from time to time just to make sure.

For example, given my husband’s double-lung (bilateral) transplant almost 4 years ago, he does not perform this spirometry except for once in a while. Recently he was working on remodeling our basement when I realized that some of the time he was not wearing his mask. To calm my fears, I requested that he do his spirometry in the morning to double check that nothing was bothering them without his knowledge. He did and I am happy to report that it was 3.6 which is very, very good.

Sure, he doesn’t check his lung functions at home except for once in a blue moon these days but if he is doing something out of the normal or doesn’t feel well in this slightest, his machines are turned on and used immediately. We leave nothing to chance as we want these new lungs to last another 50 years at least!

After her husband received a double-lung (bilateral) transplant in 2004, Shannon founded the Angel Cove Organ Donation Awareness Shop, which provides awareness t-shirts and gifts products for transplant recipients, living organ donors and donor families - giving 100% of the profits to help heart and lung transplant recipients with medical costs. Shannon lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with her wonderful husband and two chocolate Labrador Retrievers.

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