Well this assessment is the answer. Not everyone is accepted to go on the list for various reasons, the doctors need to be sure that transplant is the best option for you.
What is involved? It was sometime ago I had my assessment, August 99, but I will write it down as I remember it. I went to Harefield Hospital at 9.00am for my assessment having been told I would have to stay over night. First of all I was shown to my room (at Harefield most of the time you get a room of your own), then a nurse gave me a rough idea of what was to come. Consultant Doctor Nick Banner came to see Jan and I, he told us various things about transplant good and bad. The good in my option out weighed the bad, bad being things like no shell fish, pâté, rare steak, grapefruit and other food you cannot eat after transplant, various pills you will have to take for the rest of your life and their side effects, the list was at the time quite long. After he left the room Jan and I chatted about what we had been told and I still felt this was the way forward for me. Then the transplant co-ordinator came to see us and explained what they will say when you get the call to come in and that it is more likely to be at night. Next a nurse with a empty gallon bottle came to see us, this was for a 24hour urine collection (yes you do nearly fill it by the end of 24 hrs), blood samples are taken next, blood pressure and temperature, then off for E.C.G, Echo cardiograph, x-ray, then an exercise test on a tread mill, followed by a breathing/lung test and that is it as far as I remember all you need the first day
The next day I had a Muga Scan and then I got to go home. I then had to wait and see if I would be excepted to go on the list. I started out wondering if I wanted to go on it and then I found myself hoping I am excepted, so then the choice would be back in my hands. As you already know I was excepted and after a trip to Australia in November 1999, I went on the list in December 1999 and eight months later got the call to go in, I was fairly lucky as I only got the one call and the donor heart was ok for transplant, sometimes you are called into hospital and the donor heart turns out to be unacceptable for transplant. That must be really stressful for the patient and their family, as this can happen to the same person more than once.
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