Surviving with a Donor Heart: Phase After the Transplant
It is a nightmare, not only for the patient but also for their family, when a doctor declares that the patient will require a heart transplant for survival. The surgery itself is complicated and requires extensive care on the part of the doctors and the family to help the patient get through the stage. As soon as the transplant word is mentioned, your Google searches starts to contain keywords like ‘best organ transplantation centre’.
• A weakening of the heart muscle (cardiomyopathy)
• Coronary artery disease
• Heart valve disease
• congenital heart defect
• ventricular arrhythmias
• Failure of a previous heart transplant
Organ transplantation hospitals in India has highly experienced doctors and technicians to perform the surgery. Moreover, with the advanced technology machines, the complications are reduced and the procedure is performed more precisely.
The heart transplantation surgery is a complicated performed under the influence of anaesthesia. As this is an open heart surgery, the anaesthesia puts the patient to sleep and he/she doesn’t experience the extensive pain. During the surgery, the surgeon removes the defective heart through a chest cavity. The patient is put on ventilator to help him/her perform the basic functions of breathing and removing the fluids from around the lungs. The new healthy heart is attached to the patient’s body and the main vessels and arteries are sewed to the new heart by the surgeon.
After the surgery, the patient is completely put on bed rest for a few weeks to let the body get accustomed to the new body part. This gives it time to accept the donor heart as its own. The patient is kept in the ICU for a few days where his/her every activity is taken into account. The heart rate is monitored and made sure that the heart is working properly before the patient is moved into a normal room.
When the patient is finally discharged from the hospital, he is still expected to go to the regular visits to the hospital so that the doctors could monitor the functioning and whether the body is able to accept the new heart.
The patient needs to keep taking the assigned course of medications so as to ensure that the treatment is successful. They need to follow the instructions given by the doctor seriously because it’s the only thing that will help them leave the bed and go back to their normal lives.
It has been observed in many heart transplant patients that they have had a successful recovery and have gone back to their normal lives. Some women who had gone through a heart transplant surgery have even managed to get pregnant. Though, taking such huge decision must involve your doctor’s input.
There are some restrictions that would follow even after the surgery and the person may not be able to do the heavy weight lifting or extensive cardio workouts but it will help you live a longer and healthier life.