The success or failure of a kidney transplant relies upon its care after the surgery. The human body has been designed to reject foreign objects in its system. Therefore, proper precautions must be taken to prevent this from happening. Patients that have undergone the transplant require utmost care and attention post surgery in order to ensure that the body does not reject the new organ.
If there are no other complications, the hospital recovery is generally 5-10 days. The first 24 to 48 hours after the surgery are spent in intensive care units. Here, the doctors monitor the patient’s condition and provide constant care. The next few days maybe spent in hospital care as the patient attempts to walk and adjust to the daily routine. The doctor will provide all necessary instructions, medication, and tests that need to be diligently followed by the patient.
Long Term Care
A dedicated team of doctors will regularly monitor your condition and you will be assigned a transplant coordinator who will be your primary source of long-term contact. For a year after the kidney transplant, you will see your coordinator and doctors on a weekly basis. Gradually you will be transferred under your personal nephrologist. Annual visits to your doctor are mandatory, where your doctor will undertake complete medical checkup and detailed assessment of the functioning of the kidney. Be prepared for a blood test during each visit to your doctor.
Patients should strictly follow the drugs and medication routine provided by doctors to prevent rejection of the graft kidney. Any side effects or problems arising out of use of these medicines should be immediately reported to the doctor so appropriate modifications can be made. Dosage and type of drugs can vary according to each patient and their body’s reaction to drugs prescribed.
At Home Recovery
At home, recovery is also very crucial to the patient’s well-being. Patients should take a minimum of two to four weeks off of their schedules to make a full recovery. During this time, complete rest and relaxation are advised. The patient should maintain the highest standard of cleanliness and take all precaution to avoid germs. Fast food and unhealthy food items should be eliminated from the patient’s diet for a few months. Hot, home cooked food should be prepared for the patient and vessels should always be washed before serving. The patient along with loved ones should regularly wash their hands and keep the patient’s room fresh and clean at all times.
Patients are advised to avoid crowded public places and limit physical activities. Always apply sunscreen before stepping out and avoid lengthy exposure to direct sunlight. Constantly be in touch with your transplant coordinator and report any discrepancies, no matter how minor. Kidney transplant patients can live a long and healthy life provided proper care is given. Dedication on the part of the patient, his loved ones, and skill of the doctor will ensure a speedy recovery.