Please note: This story was originally published on May 27th, 2015.
Written By: Carissa Haston, Transplant Recipient
It was about midnight on March 12, 2006 when my life changed forever: I was at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center awaiting a life saving transplant. Earlier that day I had been admitted with fluctuating blood pressure and I was a scrawny 62 pounds. I had days, if not just hours, left to live.
Due to gastroparesis and chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction, two gastrointestinal conditions which lead to paralysis of the GI tract, I had not eaten in 12 years. I relied on nutrition through IV lines (something known as TPN), but with so many near-fatal blood infections from the central lines, I had lost most of my veins and they were losing the ability to feed me anymore. As a complication of TPN, my liver was failing.
For 13 months I had waited for a transplant of my stomach, small bowel, pancreas, liver, and duodenum.
Photo: Carissa's Outlive Yourself Pledge is to "advocate for cures for others!" How will you #outliveyourself?
Waiting and Hoping