I received a liver transplant July 19, 2011 at UNC Hospital at Chapel Hill. On June 24, 2011 my liver failed suddenly due to blood clots which blocked off my hepatic vein. This was a one in a million incident, a rare complication, stemming from a blood disorder called Budd-Chiari, which developed due to my blood disorder, Polycythemia Vera. Since July 2011, my kidneys had not functioned more than 20%. At the end of 2017, my kidneys shut down. I was fortunate to receive a kidney from a living donor (who chooses to remain anonymous) in April of 2018. In June of 2019, doctors thought my kidney was having mild rejection or inflammation and recommended a kidney biopsy. The kidney biopsy caused a bleed, which caused a 12cm hematoma that pressed on my transplanted kidney for several months and caused irreversible damage to my kidney and now I am in need of a living kidney donor again.
Since my kidney biopsy, my kidney function has been fluctuating and I am in End-Stage Kidney Failure and now need another kidney transplant. Once a week, I have to have blood work so doctors can monitor my kidney function. Since they continue to see negative lab reports, they have advised me to be re-listed on the kidney transplant waiting list which is 5 to 8 years long. No one could have imagined such an unfortunate event coming from a physician recommended kidney biopsy procedure. Doctors are not sure how much longer my transplanted injured kidney will last. At this point, doctors have advised me to get the word out and start looking for living kidney donors, so when the situation arises a match would already be lined up.
A living kidney donor can be a positive and beautiful experience. A healthy person can donate one of their kidneys and continue to live a normal life. Surgery is now performed laparoscopically and you can return to daily activities in 1 or 2 weeks. In my case, doctors have stated it is a lot safer for me to go kidney-to-kidney than do dialysis. If I have to have dialysis again and develop any type of complications, I would not be a candidate for a kidney transplant.
I believe you have two kidneys for a reason. There are lots of things in our body we don’t need two of. We can’t live our lives wondering what may happen, while watching others that are suffering.
If anyone is interested in becoming a kidney donor, my insurance will cover all testing and surgery costs. There is also a Living Donor Program that will cover food, lodging and travel.
Please note if we are not a compatible match and you are still interested in kidney donation, we can explore the option of “Paired Kidney Donation”, which can be any blood type.
These are uncertain times. Many things feel beyond our control. Have you been asking yourself what you can do to make a difference? To give your life meaning and to help someone else?
If you have ever thought of becoming a living kidney donor, now is the time. I can be contacted at 828-696-5525.