Vanderbilt Transplant

Listen to your body

Understanding Rejection
Rejection of the new heart is always a possibility, although the likelihood decreases with time. Click here to read more about rejection.

Watching Out for Infection
Be alert to the following signs and symptoms that might indicate an infection. If any of these occur, please notify your physician immediately:

  • Temperature of 100 degrees F or greater that persists for several hours. Take your temperature every day and record on your flow sheet. Do not take any medication, such as Tylenol or aspirin, to lower your temperature until instructed by your physician. These drugs could mask the symptoms of an infection and make it difficult to identify the problem.
  • Cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, or mucous production that might indicate a lung infection
  • Fatigue, persistent headache, or "flu-like" symptoms (for example, body aches) that might indicate illness
  • Redness, swelling, tenderness, or drainage from the chest incision or any other area of the body
  • Pain or burning with urination
  • Development of any blisters or sores on the skin
  • Development of white patches or sores in the mouth


Every Day:

  • Check your radial pulse and record the rate on a sheet.  
  • Weigh yourself every day and record the amount on a sheet. An increase of 2 or more pounds in 24 hours would be considered abnormal.
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