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Recovery of energy after kidney transplant


I had my kidney transplant about six weeks ago.  I'm in my 30's, and other than CKD, didn't and don't have any other significant health issues.  I was very anemic before the surgery, but my hemoglobin and hematocrit levels have gradually ticked up since then, and are now on the lower end of the normal range.  I generally feel pretty good now, and have been able to go back to work (I have a desk job) and do exercise walking (not cleared yet for anything more rigorous).  But I get very drowsy nearly every day in the late morning or early afternoon and have to kind of fight through it, usually by drowning it with coffee, or if I'm home, to take a nap.  

Is this something others have experienced?  How long did it take to get back to a normal energy level after the surgery?

Thanks for any thoughts.  

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  • Congratulations.
    Your body and mind have been though a lot. Give yourself time to recover. Be kind to you
  • I was back to work 4 weeks after my kidney transplant, the biggest issue was recovering from the incision which i would say took 3 weeks  to heal 90 percent thats is when i was able to wear work pants. 

  • I had my kidney transplant 1.5 years ago.  I am in my 60's and was quite active up to the last year prior to transplant. I felt better when I came out of anesthesia after the transplant. I began to walk and do light weight lifting from month 2 thru 6 post transplant.  The 6th month the doc cleared me to run.  It took almost a year to get back in shape. My hemoglobin levels were far below normal and it took six months of workouts to get them back to normal.  However, I felt good and did not experience the afternoon drowsiness.  I retired the day of my TKD, but returned to part time work 8 months later..  I try to get at least 6 hours of sleep every night.  Good luck on your journey back to health and don't over do the exercise.

  • Sorry to add an additional comment, but when you have kidney failure you become anemic and lose muscle mass.  You get out of shape.  After the transplant, I had to adjust to meds, and had to work out (walk, swim, dance by myself at home) to get back into some form of "in shape."  Still working on it, and wishing I had more self-discipline.  Don't give up!  Take your meds, keep your appointments, stay hydrated, eat healthy, and MOVE if your doc says it's okay.  Take care!

  • I had a kidney transplant 21 years ago and felt immediately better.  It was as if sludge had been removed from my circulatory system (and I guess it had).  I have taken Prednisone (steroids) the whole time though, and these do increase "energy."  However, I notice fatigue when I don't keep hydrated.  I have to drink  way more than I'd like to, but definitely have better lab results and feel better when I keep the fluid intake up (no soda, alcohol, or coffee for me, just herbal tea and water).  See what your labs are and ask for a specialist's advice.  My PCP won't answer any transplant questions because he is up front about it not being his area of expertise.

  • I had a liver transplant and went back to a desk job in 6 weeks.  Was tired most of the time, but managed until around 6 months when they took me off of prednisone.  I left my job almost 11 months post transplant.  My transplant doctor told me fatigue was the complaint he heard most often.  He said it sometimes takes a year or longer and sometimes it does not leave.  He explained that the body had been through a tremendous trauma and needed time to fully heal.  

    My fatigue left me 18 months post transplant.  I am closing in on 10 years, and it has not returned.  I am 67 now and feel better than I did when I was 47.

    My advice is to discuss this with your doctor and to listen to your body.  Good luck.

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