Hopefully by this stage the LT surgery has been successful for both recipient and the donor so congratulations!.
The last important and big step from here on is the successful recovery of both the recipient and the donor. The post surgery monitoring period for recipient is around 6 months and for the donor it’s around 3 months.
Before I go into the protocols followed at the hospital post surgery, I would like you to be aware of one key thing and this is not to scare the donor but more for him/her to be mentally prepared. The donor has a healthy body and just after the surgery you feel very weak, it’s a struggle to sit on your own and walk. Therefore 2 things you need to keep in mind 1)- Have patience to let your body recover and 2)- Ensure you work on breathing plus other light exercises that the hospital recommends. There are a couple of additional tips/exercise that I am also sharing below from my experience.
Process and recovery while in hospital:
- Post surgery you are taken from OT to recovery room (4th Floor Phase-1) for around 12-24 hours where they monitor you very closely and help you to start moving a bit. Nurse/Sister Divola and Sandhya here are very attentive to ensure initial recovery is fine and you are able to sit for example.
- You are then moved to section called as Deluxe area (4th Floor Phase-1) for a day or 2. Here as well the nurses are generally good and are ready to help you with a smile. The attention given of course is not the same as in the recovery room.
- From Deluxe area you are then moved again to another section called as private area (3rd Floor Phase-1) where you are expected to be mostly independent as the nurses here won’t be paying you much attention. Given the shortage of rooms, donor generally gets moved to private area very quickly.
Unfortunately nobody explains you this process before the surgery and since for the first 2-3 days you are on the move switching rooms as well as trying to recover you don’t realize what’s happening around and what’s expected from you.
The donor if the recovery goes fine post surgery is usually discharged in a week but you need to visit the doctor every week for first 4-5 weeks post discharge.
The recipient if the recovery goes fine post surgery is usually discharged in 3-4 weeks time but he/she also needs to visit the doctor every week for around 8 weeks post discharge. Visits then becomes less frequent like bi-weekly or monthly depending on the progress.
Additional tips and Exercise outside of what the hospital already tracks :
- Post surgery, the backpain I felt was the worst and when I checked with the nurse’s they just said it’s due to weakness, until I discovered a simple exercise that helped relieve my backpain. Below is a link that shows how to do it, just 2 things to add 1)- You can do it on your bed as well since you are in recovery and lying down on floor might be difficult and 2)- You do this movement 10 times, once in the morning and once in evening. Do this for 1 week and you will definitely see a big improvement. Here is the link: https://www.biospine.com/bridge-exercise/
- The second tip is when you get up from the bed and try to stand, sit at the corner with legs hanging for 10 seconds before you stand, this will avoid sudden rush of blood and you feeling light headed and dizzy.
- Last but not the least, keep yourself hydrated by drinking enough water and as mentioned earlier breathing exercise is also the key to fast recovery.
Hope this information will help you save your dear ones and also in your successful recovery.
I believe I have now covered all the key stages and process involved for LT at ILBS. However, there is one last article that I need to write in this category but that’s more of my story post surgery given I had a complication and had to go through another surgery and my feedback to the hospital staff :-).