It was 1 mince pie too many in 2009

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It’s nearly the end of 2017 and I was reflecting on my last post about the 14th of December.

Hence the reason why I used this blog title and please remember us kidney patients have a very strange sense of humour in adversity.

It was Christmas Eve when I started a 10 day course of Anti-thymocyte globulin treatment. Sometimes I heard it called ATG rabbit on the ward.

It’s a treatment for rejection which is derived from rabbit protein. I was rejecting Jo’s kidney on 2 counts according to the doctors, this happened  after I received the gift of life, my second chance.

I was not going down without a fight. Can you imagine the look I would have got from Jo if I had rejected her !

The treatment consisted of a 12 hour infusion of the ATG rabbit for 10 days and then after each session in the afternoon I did a 2-3 hours plasma exchange. This is where blood is taken similar to a dialysis machine, the plasma is stripped and then new plasma is introduced. I am no doctor but I think the old plasma contained the T cells which were killing my new kidney.

When having the plasma exchange I was taken to another ward, at least I got out-of-the-way for 3 hours. It was a relief really as new surroundings, new staff and different people to talk to. Even the push in bed along a very long cold corridor was a refreshing change.

You can see my levels below from before the transplant on the 14th and the time it started to rise again as the rejection was happening, to finally seeing it starting to go back down around the 28th.



I remember distinctly being pushed to the treatment ward on Christmas day, on the ward they also gave dialysis to patients that were in need. What amazed me was the sudden influx of patients late in the afternoon. One after another appeared. I think I counted 4 in total and they all seems to come in by ambulance. and looked terrible.

According to some they had over indulged on Christmas lunch and had one too many mince pies. I smiled to myself in a weird way and thought all this caused by an extra mince-pie…

It’s difficult to understand that many what we call “good for  you” foods are not very good for those with renal disease  especially this on dialysis..

When you look at a renal diet and let’s be frank its rubbish.

Soon be 2018, I will be continuing with my indoor training session during winter and try to get out at a weekend and then once the days get longer and warmer it will be full throttle out on the road !

So just you go steady on those mince pies, they are potential killers !


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