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CT Scan now booked – 28th October 2009

CT stands for Computerised Tomography. This will be in the Radiology Department.
The CT Scanner is a machine that takes detailed slice-type pictures of the body using x-rays and a computer. Instead of sending out a single X-ray through your body as with ordinary X-rays, several beams are sent simultaneously from different angles. In my case it will result in detailed image of the kidneys, their location, size, the arteries and veins connected to the kidneys. From this image the surgeon can decide which will be the safest kidney to remove.  Although we have two kidneys they are not necessarily identical. One can be larger (my left one is) and they can each have a different number of veins. The fewer the better as far as surgical procedures.

I will be asked to lay on a couch which then moves through the CT machine which will scan my abdomen.  The machine is an open ring-like structure – rather like a doughnut!   I will feel nothing, but will be able to see lights on the machine.  I may be given an injection of a colourless dye which will help to show up the blood vessels.

This is what a CT Scanner can look like.

CT Scanner

CT Scanner

The hospital are great, they promised they would manage to fit in this CT Scan before I went to London and they have. I did not want my time away from home to hold up procedings any more than they had to.

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Tues, 6th October

One more evaluation test to come

I thought I had finished all the physical tests but apparently there is a CT scan of the kidneys still required. The CT scan will show the veins and arteries leading to and from the kidneys. It will show everything in much greater details. It takes about an hour and a half. The result of the CT scan will then be discussed at a consultant meeting and this will determine which kidney is to be donated and whether laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery can be performed. Hopefully soon the letter will arrive with my appointment date.

Once it is determined which kidney is to be used, then the consultant nephrologist will review all my results to date. He may or may not wish to see me. If he is satisfied that I have had all the necessary tests and he is happy with the results then I will be referred for my independent assessment.

The Indepedent assessment is a legal requirement set by the HTA (human tissue authority) in order to gain approval for me to donate and for the transplant to take place.

Once approval has been given by the HTA that will be the finish of the assessment and the next stage would be for my details to be registred with UK transplant so that I can be matched with a suitable recipient. This last stage must not be rushed and I will only go onto the donor database when it is totally convenient for me i.e. no committments to get in the way etc. Once a recipient is found which will be almost straight away, then things could happen very fast, so would not want anything to hold things up. But all this will be discussed with the hospital when approval to donate has been given.

I sit back now and wait to hear when my CT scan is. I hope it is before beginning of November as I am then away for about 2.5 weeks.

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