Published: Feb. 12, 2010
Updated: June 6, 2012
Sexual activity may be resumed after your incision heals, which is usually about six weeks after surgery.
You should be careful at first to minimize the weight or strain that is put on your incision, especially over the breast bone in patients with a bilateral lung transplant. Pain is the best indicator that too much weight is being put on the incision.
Everyone who is sexually active should take precautions to make sex as safe as possible. This is especially true for you, as the immunosuppressive medications that you are taking make you more susceptible to sexually transmitted diseases, as well as other infections.
The use of a latex condom is essential to safe sex. Using a condom does not guarantee that you will not get a sexually transmitted disease, but it is your best preventive measure after abstinence.
If you are certain that your partner is faithful, use of a condom may not be necessary. But since something as simple as a woman’s common vaginal infection could cause serious infection in a male transplant patient, complete, candid communication with your partner is essential. In such a situation, even faithful partners should use a condom or abstain from sexual intercourse.
Single people must insist on using a condom when a relationship becomes sexual. This is not always an easy or comfortable thing to do, but you have come too far to make what could be a very dangerous mistake.
Finally, do not forget about birth control. Pregnancy could be hazardous for a female lung transplant patient. Your transplant coordinator and doctor are available to discuss these matters with you if you so desire, so please don’t be afraid to ask about your concerns.