Polycystic Kidney Disease Is A Genetic Disease
I am 57 years old.
I first found out I had Polycystic Kidney Disease when I was 31, in between having my 2 boys. My father had the disease and I was advised by my doctor to be tested for it. There was no question whether I would be tested. Yes, I wanted to know. So along I went and there it was in all its glory, in front of me on the ultrasound screen.
To be truthful, I didn’t think too much of it. Nothing was going to happen to me in the near future, and so off I went raising my 2 boys and living a very normal life, only seeing my nephrologist every 12 months.
Everything was going fine until I was about 50. My kidney function was slowly declining. I was now going to my specialist every 6 months, then 3, then 2, then finally at 53 years old down to every month. It was scary.
I went out to my car and burst into tears. My life was going to change from this moment on.
Finding A Living Organ Donor
My girlfriend who I had known for 20 years just so happened to visit me from South Australia a month before my last visit to my nephrologist. She asked me how was my kidney disease going. I replied, “Oh fine. I’m going to see my specialist next month”.
She said “You know if you ever need a kidney, you can have one of mine”.
“Thanks so much I said,” and that was it. She returned home a week later, and nothing more was said during her time with me.
One month later I needed a kidney. I opted to advertise on Facebook to my friends and put the word out. I was astonished. I had 5 women, all friends, who offered me a kidney. Of course it’s not that easy. I rang my South Australian girlfriend, and said “Did you mean it when you said you would give me your kidney”? She said ” Of course, when do want it?”
So it all started from there! Tests, tests and more tests! Finally on 4th March 2014, she gave me her spare. She had a few complications, but is well and truly over them and I had a serious problem after 3 months and nearly lost the kidney. But I didn’t! It has now been 30 months and all is great.
Thank goodness for my girlfriend! I’m forever thankful to her.
Unfortunately both my sons have inherited the disease. My 25-year old has a kidney function of only 16 GFR so will be undergoing the transplant/dialysis road in the not too distant future. My eldest son is OK at this time.
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