After the transplant, a new chapter of your life will begin. With good renal function, your quality of life will improve significantly: your physical condition will be better and you will have more freedom. Although you will generally feel better after the transplant, this does not mean you won’t face new challenges. Both emotional and physical.
A new lifestyle
In order to stay healthy, you will need to adjust your lifestyle: eating healthily and making sure you get enough exercise are very important. To prevent rejection, you will need to take medication. Particularly in the first months after the transplant, this means you have to take a lot of different medicines several times a day. You will need to get used to new habits, which can be difficult. At the hospital, you will be given a Medical Diary. Here you can list all your medicines and when you need to take them. This can help you to use your medication correctly. If you notice that you often forget to take your medication, discuss this with your doctor. They can give you some helpful tips.
The doctor will keep a close eye on you after your transplant. In the first month you will visit the polyclinic at least once a week. Over time, this will be reduced. If everything is stable, you will only need to come for a check-up four times a year. After a year, you will return to your own centre for check-ups.
Trusting the new kidney
For many people, it is difficult to rely on the new kidney, because there is always a chance of rejection. The chance of rejection is highest in the first three months. This period will be very stressful for you and the people around you. The uncertainty about whether your body will accept the kidney will continue. It is important to compartmentalise this and not to let it play a major role in your life. It can help to talk to people about your uncertainty. Family or friends, for example. You can also read about other experiences on this website.
Signs of rejection include less urine or kidney pain, for example. It is important for you to contact your transplant team if you notice these signs. Rejection symptoms do not immediately have to mean the end of your kidney. The rejection can often be prevented by changing your medication.
Read other patients’ experiences