After going through a traumatic surgery such as organ transplant, one cannot wait to resume his normal routine.
However, the key is moderation and understanding your limits. Since you've undergone a major surgery, initially you will have lesser energy and it's important to give your body time to heal and adjust to a foreign object.
Taking good amount of rest and pacing your activities is recommended to avoid any strains on your recovery.
Also Read: What Happens When You Donate Organs
If a relative or a friend is donating an organ, the person has to go through various tests to be sure that he/she is both psychologically and medically fit.
A psychological evaluation is necessary to understand that the patient is not being forced to donate his organs.
After the surgery, the donor needs to keep the following things in mind:
- Avoid excessive physical exercise like lifting any heavy objects after the surgery.
- Get kidney function test, urine exam and blood pressure check every 3 months for a year right after the surgery
- After a year, one should go for regular checkups once in a year.
When it comes to the recipient, proper care after the surgery is of utmost importance. The body takes time to adjust to a foreign organ and hence the patients are put on very strong medications.
The immune system of the body reacts to a new organ and does not easily accept it. Hence, we recommend immune suppressive drugs to the patient. These medications are very strong and increase the susceptibility of an infection in the patient.
After the surgery, the recipient needs to keep the following things in mind:
For the first few months avoid any crowded areas where the chances of getting an infection are high. Also, patients should not eat outside food at least till their body has adjusted to the new organ. The doses are reduced within one year's time.
The patient should go for a regular check up:
Twice a week in the first 3 months
Once a week in the next 3 months
Once in 2 weeks for the next 3 months
Once a month for the next 3 months
Once in 3 months for lifelong.
Also Read: Benefits Of Donating Blood
One of the most important aspects of organ donation is counselling. Not only the donor or the recipient should be counselled about the risks of organ transplant, but the family of the patient should also be a part of this session.
The recipient goes through a lot of pain in the first few days. The body needs time to adjust to the new organ.
Also, occasionally, transplanted kidneys get rejected on the table and the kidney has to be thrown away. This can have severe impact on the family members and also on the person donating the organ.
In such cases, educating and making the family members understand the risks involved in organ transplant is of utmost importance.
MBBS & MD
Dr. S. Sundar, holds the position of Director and Chief Nephrologist of the Karnataka Nephrology and Transplant Institute. He is currently the Chief Ne phrologist at the Columbia Asia Hospitals