We just got back from UCLA’s kidney transplant orientation. I somehow feel like a little kid on an Easter egg hunt, all of a sudden!
They told us that the average wait for a kidney is 5 – 7 years! There are about 80,000 people in the nation waiting for organs. Neither of us can imagine Dave having to go through dialysis, 3 times a week, for another 5 years. So I am really hoping that I can be his match. My brother is also offering to be a donor, and will be tested when he comes back to California.
We will be meeting with the transplant team in a few weeks, and then be given our own nurse coordinator. I guess we’ll begin testing at that point. It will also be nice to have someone I can bounce stuff around with.
As for the process of being a donor or finding a donor, it’s sort of comical. They told us not to offer to pay anyone for a kidney (like we were going to take an ad out in the paper). Ok, I guess I could see how offering someone a little “bonus” might influence his/her decision to donate. Although, “altruistic” measures of finding a donor are “ok”. So, I guess if we happen to run across a person who has always wanted to be a live organ donor, but who doesn’t want or expect compensation, AND who passes the psych part of the evaluation….we’re golden! Have you ever met anyone who has always wanted to donate an organ, and was just looking for the opportunity??? Yeah, me either.
Dave is also going to have a bunch of tests run this week, partly due to the evaluation process. The other reason is checking kidney size, and getting ready for the inevitable biopsy.
Yes, we are still going to pursue a biopsy, since we want to make sure it wasn’t something acute that happened early this year to make his kidney function go crazy. If it’s truly the kidneys that are too scarred to come back, then at least we’ll know. On the other hand, if there is something else we can do to get function back without transplant, we will.
Thanks for all the emails, requesting updates about Dave. I hope this gets you guys up to date.