In telling our story, we aim to raise awareness for organ donation and help others who are facing transplant and recovery

Having gone through two liver transplants and recoveries, Jeff is a testament that with the right medical and support team, along with a positive attitude, you can not only survive but thrive after transplant surgery.

Transplant #1: A complex surgery, and a long and difficult recovery

Jeff’s 10-hour transplant surgery took place on July 6th, and was thought successful, but a few days later it was discovered that the new liver’s bile ducts were damaged. This occurred sometime between the donor surgery and the transplant. In addition to several post-op procedures to fix the bile ducts, lack of sleep, loss of appetite, and constant pain, and several other factors made the recovery difficult. After two months of battling infections including Sepsis, and losing over 50 pounds and all mobility, Jeff was told that the liver couldn’t be saved and that he would need a second transplant. This happens to 2% of liver transplant patients.

Transplant #2: A much easier surgery and recovery

After exhausting all options from liver transplant #1, our incredible team of surgeons and doctors (and NP’s, PA’s, PT’s, pharmacist, nutritionists, and nurses) at Henry Ford Hospital had a very caring and heartfelt conversation with us about Jeff needing a second liver transplant. This conversation happened in September, and 82 days after his 1st transplant, on September 26, a second deceased donor’s liver became available. It was a perfect match. The surgery lasted only 4 hours — with a much faster recovery — thanks to a healthy liver. Our journey of healing continued until Jeff felt 100% on Christmas Day (2022). Since this, his recovery has involved a lot of hard work and determination. Today Jeff is living a full life and is an inspiration to us all.

YOU CAN DO THIS!

For years we dreaded and feared the thought of transplant surgery. But after going through two of them, I can tell you that there’s nothing to fear because of your transplant team and transplant center/hospital. Your recovery may be difficult, but with the right mindset, you can get through it. This website contains resources that will help educate and encourage you as you go through this journey. You can also schedule a Zoom call with us to discuss your situation, concerns and questions.