Updated: Apr 21
If you are suffering from Crohn's Disease and resulting in fatigue you could be very low in iron. This was the problem with me after having a right hemicolectomy as a result of a complication of Crohn's resulting in a life-threatening Psoas Abscess.
Finally, a few weeks after my right hemicolectomy, I had to have a blood transfusion due to Crohn's Disease complications; basically, I was drained of all energy!
Following my very traumatic operation and life-threatening scare I was still extremely fatigued after the surgery so my GP ordered a blood transfusion to see if that would help.
Before I had my Crohn's diagnosis in 1999, I had always been a regular blood donor. In saying that, I used to cringe at the idea of actually being a recipient of someone else's blood. I know that sounds dreadful to say that, but that was me 'before', not now. It wasn't until this year, when I became so terribly unwell, and after so many drips of antibiotics and painkillers that I realised that receiving blood wouldn't be much different.
Now here is where I feel I learnt a life lesson; receiving a body part, organ or blood from a donor is actually a precious gift. There is nothing icky about it and it really is all about love. The fact that someone else is willing to give up a part of 'them' to save or help another person's life is pretty extraordinary. When you think of the parents that are grieving the loss of their child who unselfishly donate the body to help save another person, you have to take a bow to them.
The same with blood. A blood transfusion is a gift and I have accepted it with all my heart and I'm here to tell you that it has made an enormous difference to my wellbeing. It took about three weeks after the transfusion for the change to happen, but when it did WOW I was energy plus. I still am!
The transfusion itself took all day as it was my first. They have to cannulate you to start the procedure (I've had so many cannulations I don't get scared of them now). Once cannulated for the blood transfusion you will receive some saline and then the donated blood will follow. Once the transfusion is finished it will be flushed by more saline.
My advice is to take plenty of reading material or an iPad to watch Netflix or browse the internet because it does take a long time.
I had my transfusion in the Oncology ward at Forster Private Hospital on the Mid North Coast of NSW. We are so fortunate in Australia to have Medicare, and even though I was a public patient, I still had my transfusion at this hospital. The nurses were amazing and I had the best baked chicken lunch ever! I had to have a few blankets on me because the ward was cold.
The only thing I wonder is about the person who gave me their blood. Who are they? Whoever you are, thank you. Thank you with all my heart you made one woman much healthier and happier.
He will probably never read this but, thank you Dr Doan for arranging this. You are the best!