Hello! My name is Olivia, I’m 29 years old and I was diagnosed with Biliary Atresia at 6 weeks old.
Biliary Atresia is a disease of the bile ducts that affects only infants. Bile is a digestive liquid that is made in the liver. It travels through the bile ducts to the small intestine, where it helps digest fats.
In Biliary Atresia, the bile ducts become inflamed and blocked soon after birth. This causes bile to remain in the liver, where it starts to destroy liver cells rapidly and cause cirrhosis, or scarring of the liver.
Soon after diagnosis I underwent an operation called a Kasai. The aim of the Kasai procedure is to allow drainage of bile from the liver into the intestine through the new duct.
I developed a few problems due to this disease such as Portal Hypertension (high pressure within the portal vein), Oesophagil Varices (enlarged blood vessels in the oesophagus), and Pruritus (an accumulation of bile acids in the blood causing itching).
However, in autumn (2014) i became seriously unwell and started to experience multiple episodes of melena (bloody stools) causing me to loose blood. This required a couple of blood transfusions to replace the blood loss. Soon after i was hospitalised, I gained ascites which is the accumulation of fluid in the peritoneal cavity, causing abdominal swelling. Unfortunatly, the ascites became infected causing a whole array of problems.
The decision was soon made to be placed on the transplant list and so in Dec 2014 I was confirmed as listed.
In Dec 2015 I was removed from the list as my condition improved. During 2014 – 2017 I continued to be hospitalised for another couple of bleeds along with one Cholangitis infection . This forced the decision to go through the transplant assessment again. In Nov 2017, I was placed yet again as ‘active’ on the list for the second time. Luckily this time, I didn’t have to wait much longer for a call, and this time I was successful. In Spring 2018, I received a successful split liver Transplant in which I shared the smaller lobe (left lobe) with a baby.
My blog is about my journey living with liver disease, my wait for a new liver and life after transplantation. Please read, comment and share.
If you would like to contact me please visit my Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/liviyar
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