Kathleen M. Sullivan, Transplant Recipient
Share Kathleen's story with others:
My life was spent taking medication and being rushed to a hospital...
My story started when I was born. I have poor lungs from the start! My life was spent taking medication and being rushed to a hospital. Of course by the time I was 50 my lungs were shot. My choices were very limited since I was at end stage, so my doctor tried several hospitals which refused me due to my insurance. Finally, I was accepted by University Medical Center in Tucson. I was even luckier, since my time was running out, I was only on the transplant list for a short time.
My transplant went well and my new lungs took over after about two weeks on the vent. Once they kicked in, I was able to get up and started to do well, but since I had been sick for so long, it affected my other organs and I required eight surgeries. I was unable to eat for about six months, and even though I spent four and a half months in the hospital, which is not normal, my body finally kicked in. I was very weak, but I wanted to come home and the doctors let me.
My family was all around me, and my son and his family came from Germany, and after that I started to get better. Having such a great support team headed by my loving husband help me get through the rough times.
Today, I still have bad times but my family and friends are always here for me and that has helped me. My lungs are great and I wish my donor family knew how much their loved one has helped me. He gave me new life to enjoy being a grandmother, and I will always be so thankful for his gift.