As you know, Luca had several complications following her transplant. They included a massive bleed from her hepatic artery which required surgery to fix it 5 days following her transplant. Then, the following day the hepatic artery clotted and she required another surgery to remove the clot. When her surgeon came out of that surgery, he gave us the news that likely the liver would not recover from those two injuries and she might lose the liver within that week, and that if the liver did recover, she likely would have biliary issues because the bile ducts can not repair themselves like the liver can. Miraculously, her liver did recover but he was right about the biliary issues. Those pesky ducts had major issues that landed us in the hospital for too many days in 2011. Because of those complications, we were told that she will likely need to be re-transplanted sooner than later because this liver will likely not last as long.
We were blessed that finally, her bile ducts worked enough for her biliary drains to be removed in December, and (knock on wood) she has been okay since then. All the while, we have been watching those liver numbers carefully, never knowing when they will turn south. They have been going up and down, up and down, down and up since transplant. Specifically, her AST and ALT have been just out of the normal range for over a year. Her GGT and Alk Phos have been way abnormal since her bile ducts suffered the injury - but we are told that those numbers cannot be depended on well after the bile ducts suffer an injury. Her total bili and direct bili have been normal since her drains were placed, and have stayed normal even after the drains were removed.
Friday she had labs. Friday afternoon our nurse coordinator emailed me her lab results and I cried happy tears when I saw these numbers:
AST 33 unit/L 3-34
ALT 33 unit/L 15-41
AST and ALT - two main numbers that tell us how the liver is working, are normal. It in no way indicates that her liver is going to last her forever - but for today, I am so grateful. It is a sign that her liver is happy for right now. And for that, I close my eyes, and say out loud, Thank you God. For this happy news - for some stability that we all so desperately need.