TPN for Elin Wahlstedt is much more than a clinical term. It’s a way of life.
“TPN, or total parenteral nutrition, is a medicinal substitute for people who can’t fulfil their body’s nutritional needs with regular food. But that is a terrible explanation for what TPN really is.
“TPN is life, at least for me. I wouldn’t be alive today if it weren’t for TPN.
“When I first started with the nutrition at seven years old I weighed in way below the normal weight class for someone my age. With the TPN I started gaining weight for the first time in my life.
“Still as an adult I can feel how much my body depends on the TPN, even if it’s a lot less than when I was a child. If I go more than two nights in a row without it I get really weak, tired and irritated. Imagine how you would feel if you haven’t eaten or slept for the last 24 hours. That’s basically how I feel if I don’t get my TPN, especially if I don’t compensate the nutrition loss by eating twice as much as usual. If I do that I can manage one day with my mood under control.
“The TPN is sort of like a long meal for my body every night. An ‘all you can eat nutrition buffet’. I can honestly say that there is no greater feeling than getting my TPN after not having it for a night or two. It’s like getting your quality of life back.
“Sure, some days I can feel quite upset about my situation, feeling jealous of my friends when they do things I can’t. But when it comes down to it this is my life and I won’t let these circumstances make me an unhappy person. This is my life and it’s the greatest life I could have ever been given!”
Find out more about Elin’s journey to being diagnosed with a rare medical condition and how she copes with being on TPN on a daily basis.