Two Liver Transplants due to Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis (PSC)
I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis (UC) when I was about 21 years old and Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis (PSC) less than a year later. I received my first liver transplant in February 2006 and my second liver transplant due to PSC recurrence in March 2012.
I have experienced bacterial infections, bile duct strictures, blood transfusions, body and upper right quadrant pains, bone loss, chills, enlarged liver and spleen, elevated liver enzymes, fevers, fluid accumulation, gallstones, hepatic portal vein stricture, intestinal ulcers, jaundice, post transplant diabetes, pruritus, sepsis, stomach cramps and gas pains, swelling and weight loss. Did I miss anything? (Laughs)
I've stared death in the face so many times now I'm pretty sure that I surpassed nine lives a long time ago and I'm not even a kitty cat! All joking aside, I know that there are still many people out there that have it worse than even me. Therefore, I am humble. I also know that while I've won two major battles, the war isn't over yet. PSC is unpredictable and you never know if or when it will recur. At this point though, I'm battle hardened and the last thing I'm going to do is give up. The only way that will ever happen is if my body gives up before my heart and mind do. Until then, I plan to continue to LIVE!
I can't express my gratitude in words for the gifts of life I have received. Therefore, I live each day to the best of my ability, for my wife and three year old daughter, my family, my friends, my colleagues and my work. I couldn't have pulled through the past 14 years without them including all the help I received from health care practitioners/professionals involved in my case. A lot of people were instrumental in my survival.
Finally, I also want to give special shout-outs to Toronto General Hosptial (TGH), Toronto Western Hospital (TWH), the University Health Network (UHN), Lakeridge Health Oshawa and anyone else I may have missed. Over the years there have been many significant improvements to the Multi Organ Transplant Program at TGH and especially between 2006 and 2012. That trend continues today... I wish everyone the best and a Happy New Year 2015!