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Post OP Care

Post-Operative Care
Lung transplant is a complex medical procedure and requires a lot of monitoring and attention to ensure a healthy life for the patient after the transplant.  Because of the several complications and complexities involved in the procedure, one needs to follow strict regulations before, during and after the lung transplant. Some of the procedures that must be undertaken to make lung transplant procedure a success are discussed below –

ICU - The patient is transferred to ICU as soon as the lung transplant surgery gets over. The patient is kept for around 3 to 4 days in ICU so as to ensure intensive care and infection-free environment for him or her. 

Rejection – After the transplant procedure is complete, there are chances that the patient’s body rejects the newly transplanted organ(s) by considering it as a foreign element. The immune system of the patient can attack the transplanted organ so severely that the newly transplanted organ could even get damaged. So to avoid organ rejection, patients are provided with Immunosuppressants. Immunosuppressant’s, as suggested by the name, suppress the immunity of the patient and hence help the body to accept the newly transplanted lung.

Diagnostic Tests – These tests are also conducted to verify the functioning of newly transplanted lung along with checking for any complications that the patient might be experiencing. 

Blood Tests: - Due to a heavy dosage of Immunosuppressants, immunity of the patient is compromised and as such blood tests are necessary to find out about any infection and ensuring the success of the lung transplant.  

Dietary Restrictions: - The patient must avoid smoking and the intake of tobacco at all costs. A nutritious diet should be taken by the patient so that his or her body functions properly proving helpful in the recovery process.

Regular Check-ups – Patients whose lungs are successfully transplanted are also required to undergo regular check-ups involving examining bone density, blood pressure, blood sugar levels, x-ray examinations, etc. Regular check-ups help in detecting any health related issues and complexities that may arise after the transplantation.   

Patient, who has undergone lung transplantation, should expect to stay in the hospital for 7 to 21 days after the surgery. The patient is initially transferred to ICU for first 3 to 4 days to ensure intensive care. The recovery period for a patient who has got his or her lung-transplanted is around 6 months. The patient needs to visit hospital frequently after his or her transplant surgery. The frequency is quite high during first 2 months and then becomes low with time and recovery of the patient. These follow-ups are essential because doctors observe the functioning of patient’s transplanted lung and other related organs very carefully. The dose of immunosuppressants is also decided and modified during these follow-ups depending upon the patient’s health.       

Prevention of Lung Disease
If a person follows proper preventive measures strictly and regularly, he or she can save himself or herself from a lot of lung diseases and hence the need to undergo a lung transplant.

There are many ways to prevent lung diseases and keep them healthy throughout your life. These preventive measures are very effective when it comes to the prevention of lung diseases. Below are some of the precautions and preventive measures that one should adopt to ensure disease-free lungs -   

  • Ensure regulated blood pressure: - high blood pressure or low blood pressure; both are enough to make your lungs, and the connecting blood vessels suffer from various diseases. Fluctuating blood pressure can lead to pulmonary hypertension.
  • Quit smoking: - Smoking leads to countless of health issues especially those related to the lungs. Smoking damages almost all organs of human body and their functioning. So, one must quit smoking at all costs.  
  • Maintain correct BMI: - Obesity is the mother of many diseases in the world including the lung failure. People who have BMI or Body Mass Index greater than 40 are more prone to lung failure.
  • Exercise daily: - Daily exercise plays a major role in keeping an individual fit and healthy. Exercise must be done at all costs and on a regular basis.
  • Healthy Diet: - Eating healthy foods including fruits, nuts, cereals, and green vegetables helps your body stay in shape and avoid unnecessary stress on the digestive system. Consuming nutritious diet is a must to keep your health in good condition.
  • Breathe Deeply: - When you breathe deeply, it ensures that the lungs are getting proper oxygen supply, and all lobes are working perfectly. It also gives a proper workout to the diaphragm. Whenever you get a chance, practice deep breathing as it can help avoid many fatal lung diseases.

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