[Previous Months][Date Index][Thread Index][Join - Register][Login]
[Message Prev][Message Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]

Re: [IP] transplants and cures

>In fact, with the anti-rejection drugs I'd have
>to take, unless they have improved them a great deal, I would not have a
>transplant until I reached a ripe old age.  You know that cause & effect
>relationship.  The anti rejection drugs, which allow your body to keep a
>transplanted organ/cells, and certainly have a much higher quality of life,
>will, in the LONG run, kill you.  Of course, I have the choice at this poing
>of having the cell transplant or staying on the pump.

I know somebody who just decided to put his name on a list for
a pancreas transplant, but he just got a new (well, used) kidney, 
so he has to be on the anti-rejection drugs anyway.

>If they could just improve on the anti rejection meds, I'd go for the islet
>cell transplant in a minute. 

I may be wrong about this, but isn't that part of the importance of 
stem-cell research? If islet cells were cloned from your own tissue, 
rejection wouldn't be an issue, so you wouldn't have to take the anti-
rejection drugs. At least, that's how I understand it. Anyone who 
knows more, please feel free to enlighten me.

I think of transplants (either pancreas or islet cells) + anti-
rejection drugs as a cure for diabetes, but a cure that results 
in a new, life-threatening condition.

All of which makes me think that "the cure," when/if it happens, 
won't happen in a single moment. It'll be a process. We won't
wake up one morning to find that diabetes has been cured; but
slowly, probably over a period of years, more and more people
will undergo procedures that cure their diabetes, the procedures
will become more common and more successful, etc., and even-
tually diabetes will be considered "cured." Maybe that process 
has already started. That's the way that surgical cures usually 
develop: at first it's experimental, and then the technique is 
perfected until it becomes virtually routine, as with, say, appen-
dectomy or gall bladder surgery. Which also means that a cure 
may never be *completely* without risk. (That's why prevention,
if possible, is usually better.) 

Our bodies are fragile and vulnerable -- and strong, and resilient, 
and cranky, and a lot of other things as well. Having diabetes has 
given me a new appreciation for my body's complexity. "What a 
piece of work is man...."

/Janet L.

*  This message was sent from Firstworld Webmail  *
*         http://webmail.hypercon.com/            *
for HELP or to subscribe/unsubscribe, contact: HELP@insulin-pumpers.org
send a DONATION http://www.Insulin-Pumpers.org/donate.shtml