Right Direction

Saturday, November 22

Doctors were in the hospital early today. Art’s creatinine is lower, hemoglobin is higher and fluid retained in decreasing. The kidney is still producing urine. He is feeling some better this morning. ALL GOOD!

The latest conjecture of what happened is that Art had an allergic reaction to the thymo globulin (immune suppressant) he was given after surgery to stop the kidney from being rejected. Art apparently had some antibodies in his blood that reacted to the thymo and caused an immune complex. The antibodies in his blood and the thymo clumped together and clogged up the micro filtering veins in the kidney – so the kidney function slowed down and fluid built up in his body. Doctors were all stumped. They had not seen this problem before in kidneys – but they learned it had been seen in a few livers. Plasmapheresis is how they decided to treat it.

Plasmapheresis treatment replaces the plasma in blood with “synthetic” plasma (albumin protein). It will remove the antibodies that are causing the clumping problem. The process is not very efficient so a series of five treatments in five days is necessary. The doctor in charge of the plasmapheresis says the clumps are beginning to be removed – they can tell by blood tests results. It should be a one time event. The nurse doing the plasmapheresis this morning said – if you can’t figure it out pheresis it out.

The hope now is that all the “clumps” will be removed from the kidney and it will recover with minimal damage. The kidney doctor says he will ultimately be happy with a creatinine level under 2.

The hematologists are still looking at Art’s blood to find out WHY this happened.

Things look like they are finally moving in the right direction!

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