(No word yet on the transplant listing...in the meantime...)
So, every transplant patient is different. No two transplant cases are ever the same. I figured I share with you what I know about Tricia's specific case.
Because of everything Tricia's body and mind have been through the past several months, she is a bit of a unique case. Although she is well enough to be listed, she is still extremely sick. I'll let you know for sure later, but she should be receiving a very high score to place her near the top of the list. There are some very big concerns involving a double lung transplant, and some even bigger concerns for Tricia:
> Tricia's PFT Levels (FEV1) are very low. We haven't had them checked in several months, but the last time (maybe in August) they were just below 15%. I'm sure her numbers are much lower now. In comparison, my PFT's would probably be in the 90's.
> Duke rarely transplants a patient who is on a ventilator. Most patients who are on a vent are simply too sick or weak to be considered for a transplant. Tricia, however, is showing everyone that she should do well through the surgery and first few weeks of recovery because she is able to do a lot of PT while either on the vent or on a "trach collar trial" (off the vent for a short period). But, patients who are transplanted while on a vent tend to be on the vent longer after transplant.
But, Tricia has a lot of great things going for her concerning her future transplant:
> (Projected) High placement on the list, meaning she should be first or second in line when the right set of lungs comes along.
> A common blood type, which increase her chances of getting a good set of lungs quickly.
> An average chest size, which also should increase her chances.
> Youth. Most transplant patients are much older than Tricia, which skews that national 90% survival rate.
> Other than her lungs, she's in good shape (despite the past few weeks).
> Duke is one of the best (as in top 1 or 2 every year) for double lung transplants. Their survival rate is actually above the national rate at around 95%.
Tricia's current PT basically consists of anything beyond laying in bed. Even to sit up is a good thing for her body. She's spending time most days standing and sitting, stand and marching in place, taking 5 minute walks around the floor, riding a stationary bike in her room for about 10-15 minutes, using a hand-bike to work her arms, lifting 3lb weights, and a few other things.