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My heart review by Tasha - video podcast

Watch Tasha's video to find out more about what it is like to have a heart and double lung transplant at Great Ormond Street Hospital.

If the video is not showing please watch it on YouTube

Tasha, now 18, had a heart and lung condition that resulted in her having major transplant surgery. Tasha has made a short film of the procedures that are part of her yearly check-ups.

"I had a heart condition – restrictive cardiomyopathy - and also a lung condition called pulmonary hypertension. This meant I had to have a heart transplant and double lung operation in July 2005. Now I go for annual reviews to check up on how things are working.

My annual review

"For the checks for my annual review, I have to have an X-ray, an ECG, and echocardiogram and a bronchoscopy. The doctors need to look inside me and check the organs are working properly.

"I am always fine about going into hospital – I am very used to going to there now, and all the doctors and nurses are really friendly. This time I took my sister’s wedding photos to show them as they are always asking about me and how I am doing.

Being filmed

"I was a bit nervous about things being filmed to start off with, but then I did not really think about it. I thought more about how much it would help other people going in to Great Ormond Street Hospital. I think some of them will be scared and they will be able to see from my experience that it is not that bad. Because I was not scared, it will give them more confidence.

"Doing the video diary was a much more fun way to get this across rather than teenagers just reading an article about my experience.

Seeing myself in theatre

"I thought it would be quite strange seeing myself on film in the operating theatre. But I didn’t see my face and only saw the doctors and just a body lying there. If I had not known better I would have though it was someone else.  It was funny seeing everyone in medical gowns and stuff!

Helping with the video diary

"When it was being filmed my friend and I suggested places to film – like us playing pool – and being down on the sea front in Great Yarmouth where I live.

My friends and family thought it was quite fun but some of them did not want to talk on camera because they felt shy. My friend Cheryl loved it though because she is really into that kind of thing!

The medication message

"I think it was good for the video diary to show how important it is to take medication when you have had a transplant. I have been told that some people have stopped taking medication because they thought they felt OK. But you can feel ill after a day or so and within a week you could be dead. If you take immunosuppressants and anti-rejection drugs you often have to keep taking them for life.

Living with transplant organs

"After a transplant you do feel very different. Before I had to fight for breath and use my shoulders to help me breathe. After the transplant it was so easy – it is hard to believe you could breathe that easily.

"On my way to have the transplant I thought about the donor.  I thought about them and their family and how they must have felt. They are so brave, it must have been so hard – but in a nice way a part of the donor is living on through you and still alive.

For the future…

"Now I take each day as it comes. I have set up some college courses for next year and I am going to carry on as a normal teenager would and have fun. I like going out with my friends, going shopping, going to the cinema and just being a teenage girl."

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