Michael Flannery

eCampaign_JasonSabaughIn the fall of 1999, my brother got a job working for temp agency that specialized in placing people in jobs in the scientific community.  They placed my brother in a lab that made dangerous chemical solutions to order.  One of the substances that they manufactured was chloroform (he often came home smelling of it).  The safety conditions at this lab were deplorable and my brother was exposed to toxic levels of chemicals.

The liver is the filter of the body and it was responsible for removing all of these poisons from my brother’s blood stream.  His liver shut down because of the amount of toxins that he was exposed to.  As with most subtle changes, the effects were not immediately apparent.  It took someone who hadn’t seen him in a while to notice that he looked a little jaundiced.  His skin was starting to turn yellow.  From then on, every day he was a little more jaundiced.  His skin got more and more yellow before eventually creeping into green.  When the jaundice gets bad, the “whites” of your eyes start to color as well.  In the days leading up to his transplant, the whites of my brother’s eyes were a deep shade of olive green.

Once we noticed that he was jaundiced but not yet knowing the reason, we took him to the emergency room.  My brother did not leave the hospital for more than a day over the next five weeks.  After a few days, the doctors had narrowed the problem down to the toxicity of his liver due to the chemical poisoning, eliminating any strain of hepatitis.  Those next few weeks were very trying for my family.  My brother was receiving the best care that University Hospitals in Cleveland could provide but there was nothing anyone could do at this point.

His condition continued to worsen: the jaundice got worse as he became sicker and sicker.  By the time he was reaching the end of the ordeal, the pollutants in his blood were not allowing enough oxygen to get to his brain and he began to revert to a childlike state.

The doctors knew that my brother needed a liver transplant, but as there are far more people in need of an organ than there are available organs, my brother was placed on a waiting list.  It was nerve-racking waiting, waiting for an organ to become available and waiting for my brother to get sick enough to move up the list.

Just when it was beginning to seem like we were going to run out of time: my brother was green from jaundice and was talking and acting like a small child, he was moved to the top of the list, but we still needed an available donor liver.  I believe the doctors, at this point, estimated that my brother had about 48 hours in which to find a liver or he would be dead.

At the eleventh hour, we learned that a young woman, otherwise healthy, had been killed by a drunk driver in an automobile accident and that she had been an organ donor and was a match for my brother.  My brother was rushed into surgery prep while doctors recovered the liver (and other organs for waiting recipients) in Indiana and brought it back to Cleveland for transplantation.

Transplant surgeries are long and they are complicated. My brother was in surgery for over 5 hours.  However, we were lucky. The organ donor was young and healthy when she was killed, and my brother was young and otherwise healthy. The doctors said that the new liver began working to filter his blood before they even had him closed up.

My brother made a steady recovery from his ordeal, and to this day 14 years later, remains in excellent health.  However, I cannot help every once in a while thinking about what might have been if any of those pieces that fell into place for our family had been otherwise.  What would have happened if the young woman had not decided to become an organ donor, or had not informed her family so that they could follow through on her generous gift, or …

I work to raise awareness of the need for more organ and tissue donors, I volunteer to honor the gift a young woman I will never know gave to me and my family, I work to celebrate the life my brother would not otherwise have had and I volunteer so that other families can have the same sort of happy outcome that mine received.

High concentration of Azithromycin in infected tissues is also caused by the fact that phagocytes and macrophages transport it to the site of infection and release in the area of inflammation. Azithromycin is prescribed in case of illness or injury at the time.