We Ignored The Doctors’ Advice And Cancelled The Surgery Because My Sister Deserved To Live

Anonymous Anonymous in Your Story on 20 June, 2018

We hoped that someday my sister would be able to breathe with ease. We hoped that maybe someday she would be able to sleep soundly like other normal human beings. We hoped that someday she would be able to travel again because this has always been her passion.

We could only hope and so we hoped that on some distant day she would be able to live a normal life again.

We didn't know that we were asking for too much. We didn't know that someday we would be asked to sign a high-risk consent form. Yes – we all knew that it was a blessing to lead even a normal life.

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My sister has a chronic kidney disease. This disease has created nightmares for our whole family.

Her world froze again when she came to know that her disease was creating problems for her again. She had her first kidney transplant 8 years back and she had been able to lead a normal life after that. But she was back on square one again.

Yet, we were quite hopeful that this time too she would be able to lead a normal life again. We thought all she needed was another kidney transplant. We returned to Ahmedabad with this hope because we trusted the doctor blindly.

Nothing was more important to us than her health now. The entire family’s focus was on our sister and her health. We knew we could regain everything else but if we lost her good health it would be difficult to revive it again.
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This time my aunt had opted to be the donor. Thanks to the government procedures and the hospital's rigid policies the entire documentation process took an extremely long time to complete – almost two and a half years.

We understood such things because several illegal kidney transplants are done in our country.

But the hospital was totally against this so we patiently worked on the documentation and finally completed it.

The day that we all had been desperately waiting for finally arrived. We were given a date for the transplant. My aunt came to Ahmedabad along with her family. Everything was going on smoothly when all of a sudden, my sister’s BP shot up just two days before the transplant. She was admitted to the hospital in the Emergency Room. A series of incidents started after this.

We felt as if they were playing with a person’s life and the emotions of an already anxious family.
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They could have easily performed the dialysis of her kidney in the Emergency Room itself immediately. But instead of doing that they waited until the morning and finally put her in the ICU.

We were familiar with her condition. We knew that every time something like this happened the only solution to her problem was dialysis. It had helped her every time in the past. So we wondered why the hospital had waited until the morning and then done the dialysis in the ICU. And guess what? Only the dialysis happened there. No other treatment was given to her in the ICU. They could have easily done this in the Emergency Room itself the previous night.

Then she was asked to get an Echo test done. We got this done. She was then shifted to the normal ward where my aunt was waiting for her because she was the donor.

The transplant was scheduled at 5.30 a.m. the next day. But at 7.30 p.m. in the evening the previous day, we were informed that we would have to sign a high-risk consent form. We were informed that her heart was weak. And that there were chances that she would be put on a ventilator when her surgery took place.

We were all aware that once a person was put on a ventilator, the chances of the patient recovering were very slim.

We knew that sometimes it took hours, months, and years for a person to regain consciousness. We also knew that a person could die or slip into a coma at such times.

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Thankfully our family was aware of all this so we did not sign the consent form. Her transplant was cancelled 5 hours before the surgery was scheduled.

The funniest part of it all is that the doctors were aware of her heart condition for the past two years. All her Echo tests had always shown the same results over the past one year.

Then why were we given false hopes?

Why did they not inform us about it earlier? Why were we told about all this just 8 hours before the surgery was scheduled? Why did they waste so much of our time when they had always been aware of her heart condition? Why was she not given proper medication to improve the health of her heart first? This could have improved the chances of the transplant being successful, isn't it? Instead of doing all this they were asking us to sign a high-risk consent form.

The cardiologist had refused to give any kind of approval for the transplant. He had put her in the high-risk category. So why did they waste so much of our time, money and resources? They were aware that a second transplant was not the right option for a critical patient like her then why had the doctors suggested that we go ahead with it?

Did they not realize that they were risking her life to improve the quality of her life?
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The hospital has agreed to refund all our money but will they be able to return three years of our time? What kind of a live joke is this? Why did they play with the emotions and hopes of an entire family?

I am sure several other families are experiencing the same kind of suffering. No wonder there is a huge scope of doing a brisk business in this industry. 

I hope this story helps create awareness in people’s minds about all these dubious practices. I hope they are all well informed about such things because only then they will be able to take the right decision for their loved ones.
Editor's Note:

Emotions cloud our good sense and reasoning ability. Awareness gives us confidence and makes us question things. Awareness is just a Google search away now. Let’s know what, why and how things go wrong within our bodies. Let’s connect with others who are suffering from similar disorders to know more about a particular disease. Let's learn to question the doctors and understand the line of treatment that they are opting for. Let’s share this story because often awareness can help us save lives.