Donating for a friend, a few tips from Mary

I was a living donor 8 weeks ago, Jan 2014.  My kidney went to New England, and my husband’s friend received a kidney.  We’re both doing well.  I had labwork done 2 weeks post-op and my creatinine was normal.

I had a laparoscopic surgery and only stayed 1 night in the hospital, but stayed a few days in a hotel nearby.  I thought I’d post a few tips that might make it a little easier/more comfortable for others.

  • Buy a Bedwedge for ~$40, since it may be hard to get in & out of bed or the recliner.
  • Sweats are not comfortable, so you may want leg warmers with your long T-shirt/gown/dress. Socks are hard to put on.
  • It hurts to cough or sneeze, so it was good to have sugarfree cough drops.  (I had post-nasal drip after the anesthesia.)
  • Hand washing/sanitizers, since you don’t want to catch a cold at this time.
  • Buy straws;  (juice boxes also worked great since they don’t spill & keep you hydrated.)
  • Everything falls on the floor, so get a picker-upper stick from the thrift store, since you can’t bend over.
  • A little notebook to write down things like names or timing of meds, symptoms, etc.
  • Pillows may be too heavy for the seatbelt, so a 1″ piece of foam may help.
  • A nurse suggested probiotics since they may give you antibiotics.
  • I wished I brought a thermometer to the hotel, since I couldn’t tell the difference between a hotflash & fever.
  • Soup w/added fresh veggies worked well for the hotel microwave.
  • Arrange your house so that things you need that weigh more than 5 lbs are up high, or easy to get to.  Buy smaller containers, e.g.  half instead of a gallon of milk, etc.

I hope this helps.  Best wishes to anyone who donates.