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Old 10-06-2006, 09:42 AM   #1
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Has anyone here ever donated a kidney?

Both my FIL and BIL have a kidney disease. They both will need a transplant at some point. My FIL is very closed lipped about his condition and really does not share with us what the doctors are saying. The doctors can't put him on the transplant list until he has tried dialysis which he refuses to do. If someone were donating a kidney to him though then we think the doctor could do the surgery right away.

Lots of people love this man and have all offered him a kidney, myself included. He is not the type of person to ever ask for it though so unless the doctor was rushing him into the hospital then he would never say he wants it. My wife is going to push him hard though as she thinks he really does want it, but just refuses to say so.

I know that he and I are the same blood type and I would probably be the best candidate to help him. Has anyone here ever gone through this before? What are some questions I should be asking the doctor? What kinds of things can I expect if I do donate?

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Old 10-06-2006, 10:01 AM   #2
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GB,
donating a kidney is something to think long and hard about. It's a wonderful generous thing..Your wife, her mother, need to really push her dad, dialysis, while no fun, is a life saving effort and should not be refused. I know GB, I have kidney issues and thought recently that I was close myself. If a transplant is the last option, then the bloods need to be typed and matched. even the same blood type doesn't always do it. let's say we have 10 things in our blood make up each..We need as many of those 10 to be the same in the donor as the recipient..The more matches the more of a chance of NO rejection of the kidney. I can't answer much more than that..But, were I you and wanting to do this, I'd sit down with the surgeon and ask him,
1-how long is the recuperation- for yourself you have a family to care for
2-what is the pain factor
anything that you have a question about, ask it,Don't be afraid.
The expense is enormous and you the kidney recipient take non-rejection drugs the rest of your life and these are fairly costly,
There are so many factors, our age, the waiting list is taking forever and many don't make it..So your offer is a God send for this man, I hope he realizes the love he is being offered.
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Old 10-06-2006, 10:03 AM   #3
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Why is he refusing dialysis? Why do you think if a kidney were immediately available the doctors would do it? Just wondering.
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Old 10-06-2006, 10:29 AM   #4
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GB, my husband just donated his kidney to his mother this past February. We had so many questions. Here is a link which has boards with tons of info and will answer some of your questions.
http://www.kidney.org/fusetalk/forum....cfm?forumid=2

My husband was hospitalized 4 days and only off work 2-3 weeks. He had some initial pain but he is back to normal now. Donating a kidney is a wonderfully generous thing to do.

edited to add - here is a link to Ohio State's info, OSU did my husband's surgery. They have tons of transplantation info on their site
http://onechart.medctr.ohio-state.ed...ngdonation.asp
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Old 10-06-2006, 10:46 AM   #5
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gb, one bit of advice. don't offer kidneys to both of your in laws.
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Old 10-06-2006, 11:12 AM   #6
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Thanks guys.

CJ I agree we need to push him hard to go on dialysis. He is the type of guy who would tell us he would rather dye then be hooked up to a machine like that. My wife things he really means that, but I think he is just a lot of talk. Asking how long the recup period is will definitely be a question I will ask. I have a friend who is preparing to go through this same thing and they told her she will be out of work for 6 weeks. I know it can be different for each person though depending on a number of factors. How much pain it will put me in is not really a factor. I will go through any amount of pain to make sure he is still around.

Gretchen he is refusing dialysis because he is a stubborn man and does not want to be hooked up to a machine. For such a smart man he is being really stupid about it to bne quite honest. The doctor has actually said that if he has a donor then he is ready to preform the surgery. My FIL's health is not getting any better and it will not. Dialysis will make him feel better, but will not solve the problem. He will need a kidney at some point and the sooner he gets it the better.

Toots, thank you so much for those links. I will read them as soon as I get home. It sounds like your husband has a relatively good experience with it. I hope the same is true for his mother!

Bucky, MIL has dibs on my liver (actually that sould go to FIL too)
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Old 10-06-2006, 11:16 AM   #7
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Hi GB it sure is a generous gesture. My father also has severe kidney issues. He has had them all his life. He is 77 and both his kidneys combined are at about 25%. At first they thought he would not make it without dialysis but he is fine for now. Given my brother passed away I am the only member of the family left to donate a kidney if it came to that.

My uncle battled with kidney disease and actually died relatively young because of kidney failure. Both his kidneys failed and he got a kidney donated from his wife (I guess their blood types matched to a great deal). He was fine for a year and after that had a rejection. It's strange how things sometime work. He was on dialysis after that for a several years and then I guess the body developed other complications. It's just sad to see someone in your family go through it.

As others said do plenty of research. My uncles wife is perfectly fine even after donating her one kidney but her efforts though not wasted did not bring the outcome they all were hoping for.
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Old 10-06-2006, 11:30 AM   #8
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Thanks for your insight Yakuta. I really wish the outcome had been better for your uncle.

i will certainly not go into this lightly. I plan on talking to multiple doctors and doing lots of my own research as well. One possible complication that I will need to weigh is that this kidney disease is hereditary so there is a chance that my wife could get it at some point. A while ago my FIL said he would not take my kidney in case DW ever needed one. The way DW and i feel right now though is the he DOES need it and as of right now she does not. The chance of her getting this disease is there, but it is small (it usually only affects men) so hopefully she will never need mine. It is a very hard think to think about and no decisions have been made yet of course. There is a lot to think about and consider and I am not even sure FIL would accept my kidney even if the doctors gave us the go ahead anyway.
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Old 10-06-2006, 12:34 PM   #9
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GB... you are wonderful for doing this but I have a question...
you said both your FIL and BIL have kidney problems is it the same thing? Something that runs in your wife's family? Is there a chance that in the future your wife or daughter my suffer from the same thing? Is there a chance that you could be a match for either of them?? You only have one kidney to give, are you sure you want to give up yours now?

smiles and hugs, t
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Old 10-06-2006, 12:42 PM   #10
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Yes it is hereditary Trish. There is a chance that my wife could get this and also a (smaller) change that my daughter could too. It usually does not affect women, but the chance is still there. That is probably going to be the toughest part of the decision for me if I ever do have to make a decision. Right now I am feeling like FIL does actually need it vs. other family members potentially needing it at some point. Chances are that both wife and daughter will not come down with this, but of course there is a chance that they will. FIL has already told me he doesn't want mine for this very reason, but that was a while ago and I am thinking that if we pushed him hard enough then he might accept it.

DW and I are lucky to have a lot of very close friends and family. Not that I want to take a chance on either of their lives, but if the worst happened then I know many people would step up to help them out as well. Of course there is no saying any of them would be a match to begin with, but this is definitely something that I need to weigh carefully.
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