Chopped Liver - A Community for Live Organ Donors and Recipients

Friday, November 18, 2005

Welcome to Chopped Liver!


Welcome, friends, to Chopped Liver, my new blog about my quest to become a liver donor for my brother, who is suffering from Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis. After pressure from my techno-savvy friends, I'm venturing into blog territory for the first time. The entries will get much shorter once I've caught everyone up to date. Hope you enjoy!

Last Thursday, I spent the day in the organ transplant unit of
Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, which not only boasts one of the top ten liver transplant teams in the country, but also is where Joe is serving his medical residency. This was my official “work up,” the process by which I am officially accepted or rejected as a donor. Only one person at a time goes through this: If they accept me, I’m “The One,” and the surgery will be scheduled as soon as possible. They drew 17 vials of blood and did an MRI, which will be used to assess whether I’m physically healthy enough and anatomically matched well enough to donate. I also met with a psychiatrist, who (bless him) determined that I am not certifiably insane, and had a complete physical with a non-transplant-team MD.

What's next:
They'll need to determine whether there are any factors that would keep me from donating, such as:

  • a liver of insufficient volume
  • a liver that has an abnormal right lobe/left lobe split (i.e. 70/30% instead of the normal 40/60%)
  • anatomically inconvenient placement and size of the ducts, veins, and arteries flowing into, out of, and through each lobe
  • any blood-borne diseases, cancerous growths, etc.

If I clear all these hurdles, we'll schedule the surgery. I should get results by Thanksgiving. Stay tuned!

2 Comments:

  • Becky,
    I"m a little late in responding to your first post, but I just got interested in the community since I may be going through the same thing for my sister. I am so glad everything turned out so well for you and your brother! My sister is coming to Chicago to be seen at Northwestern, too. I'd love to talk with you. I emailed you but have not heard back yet. Thought maybe this was a better way to reach you. Is your email still good?
    Mariann

    By Anonymous Mariann Kwiat, at 6:03 PM  

  • Thank GOD I have found this. On Thursday I am going to Northwestern Memorial to begin my quest. This blog is amazing. Thank you!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:19 PM  

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