Patti's Double Lung / Liver Transplant Story

by Transplantmommy » Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:37 pm

I'm not going to go into a huge amount of detail right now, but here is the jist of my story...

I was born with a disease called Cystic Fibrosis. In the end of 2004, I was told that I needed to look into getting a double lung and liver transplant. I started evaluations at the Cleveland Clinic in June 2005, and then found out I was 9 weeks pregnant (via a home pregnancy test) in the end of July. My son was born, via c-section (planned), 7 weeks premature in January 2006. I continued with the evaulations in March and was listed for double lung and liver in August. I had a few hospitalizations (including a 63 day stay in Cleveland) on and off, and continued getting very sick.

On January 22, 2007, I coughed up cups of blood and we rushed to my CF hospital in Syracuse, NY. I had an emergency surgery that night and then another in the morning due to coughing up even more blood. When I was stable, I was air lifted to Cleveland Clinic where I would stay and wait for the transplant. After just three days of being hospitalized there, I was told, on January 30, 2007, that a match was available for lungs and liver. I had no one with me at the hospital at that time, but my husband was trying his hardest to make his way through the snow storm to get to me. It took him 8 hours to get to Cleveland and I went into surgery an hour after he got to the hospital.

I came out of surgery at 6:30AM the next morning, and my transplant anniversary is January 31, 2007. I had a quick recovery and was out of the hospital in 12 days. I was home 2.5 weeks after that. My complications after the transplant include a sternum wire poking through the skin, acute rejection of the lungs twice, and an infection in my colon, which caused me to lose all of it. I had a colostomy bag for 9 months and now only have my small intestine remaining.

After the surgery to connect my small intestine to the 3-5 inches of my colon that they could save, I continued to heal and have been feeling great ever since. My husband and I have been married for 10 years and we have a son who is 6 and just started 1st grade today.