Kevin Scott enjoys the sunshine in his chair on the front porch of his home in Holyoke. — Johnson Publications

Liver transplant gives new life to Kevin Scott

    When Phillips County Road and Bridge Assistant Supervisor Kevin Scott awaited a liver transplant at University of Colorado Medical Center at Anschutz in Aurora, he told the head surgeon that he walked into the hospital and he would be walking out.
    That is just what happened Tuesday, Oct. 3, when Scott returned to Holyoke after receiving a liver transplant Friday, Sept. 1. After spending two weeks in surgery recovery and another two weeks in rehab, he is happy to be home now.
    Scott said he started having symptoms of fatigue and weight loss just over a year ago. After numerous tests, he was diagnosed at the UC Medical Center hepatology department with nonalcoholic cirrhosis of the liver.
    At first, the doctors said he may need a transplant in 10 years or so, he explained. Six months later his condition worsened, and the doctors found he was in immediate need of a transplant. His Model for End-stage Liver Disease score — used as a disease severity index to help prioritize allocation of organs for transplant — put him at the top of the list in late August. Ten days later he received his new organ.
    Scott said he couldn’t ask for a better hospital. All of the doctors and staff work together as a team from surgery to recovery. Over the last 25 years, UC Medical Center has performed over 1,700 liver transplants, with a current rate of nearly 100 annually.
    His wife, Karen, was by his side through the entire hospitalization. His daughter, Kelsey Scott of Denver, visited every evening after work, he said.
    Scott’s brothers Jeff Scott of Nashville, Tennessee, and Tom Scott of Jacksonville, Alabama, were with him throughout — from the day he was placed No. 1 on the waiting list until he was moved to rehab Thursday, Sept. 14. They also took his mother, Neoma Scott, who lives in Loveland, to visit him often.
    Scott said his motivation to recover was his daughter, Kelsey. She is engaged and is planning a wedding in the spring. There is no way he would miss walking her down the aisle on her wedding day, he said.
    He was happy to have so many visitors from Holyoke, Johnstown and Loveland, he said. It was very encouraging and helped so much. Pastor Al Strauss visited three or four times, which really meant a lot to him, he added. Also, he received a basketful of cards wishing him well.
    He noted that he is particularly appreciative of Mardell and Larry York who initially took him to Denver. Without them, he wouldn’t have made it to the hospital that day, he added.
    Scott said he is feeling good. He goes to coffee every morning with friends, and it feels good to be back at city council meetings, where he is a council member.
    Scott is currently receiving physical and occupational therapy four times a week. He is looking forward to returning to work as soon as his doctors release him.

Holyoke Enterprise

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