Liver Life Cafe

Stories

Introduction

We thought it might be a good idea to have a section of other peoples stories and experiences. We hope this will help others to speak out and share their experiences. This is Deb’s story, Deb’s lives in Stoke-on-Trent and had her liver transplant carried out at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham in 2014. I was lucky (I guess) that I was able to return to full-time work in the March of 2015 following my August 2014 transplant. I totally understand the mental health side of things as when I'd returned to full-time work, I broke down in April 2015 when everything was the most "normal" it'd been for many years. My transplant came following a diagnosis of Wilson's disease in November 1999 when I'd not even felt ill. It was being controlled by medication but in 2013 I started the year with a chest infection and pleurisy. Then after a fall, I broke my finger in August which needed surgery. I then got the flu in the October and fluid built up on my stomach. This got infected at the start of November 2013 and I was rushed to the hospital. During my 3rd night in there the fluid rushed up into my lungs and my right lung collapsed. Had I been at home they said I'd not have survived. They rushed me to Intensive care and drained 7 litres of fluid from my lung. I remained in the hospital for the rest of November where they drained 8 litres of fluid from my stomach. That's when they decided I needed to be transplanted and they listed me in January 2014. When I broke down in April 2015 I went to my GP and he referred me for counselling which I had until July 2015. I still have days where I get lows and anxiety. The councillor said I had a lot of signs of PTSD and also Survivors Guilt. Keeping myself busy is my way of pushing my negative thoughts back. I have found that when I say things on Facebook occasionally my friends and family react differently to the people in the Transplant Chat page for Queen Elizabeth Birmingham. So, it is good to speak to people that have been through it as they do understand more and can empathise.

Hopefully more stories can be added here later - once others feel comfortable

about sharing their experiences. Please email your stories to us at :

liverlifecafe@gmail.com