We always take this site and this fandom seriously as a community. All of our readers are important to us; so we wanted to share a special bit of personal news from our long time friend Resaw.
So after the jump, a post from Resaw.
Dear Chuck This friends,
Some of you may be aware that I have been living with kidney disease for a number of years. A milestone of sorts is coming up, soon, though, so I thought it about time to bring everyone up to date. I hope you’ll excuse the personal indulgence.
My nephrologist has come to the conclusion that I will probably need to go onto dialysis this year as my kidney function is deteriorating at a fairly fast pace recently. In advance of that need, this Friday, July 18, I will be undergoing a procedure to insert a catheter into my abdomen to the right of and a little lower than my belly button. That will facilitate my preferred choice of dialysis, which is called peritoneal dialysis (PD). The peritoneum is a lining of the abdominal cavity, but as used in PD serves as an effective filter for drawing wastes from one’s body.
When dialysis becomes necessary, I will have a machine beside my bed that will have a bag of sugary fluid in it. I will hook up that machine to the catheter and while I sleep, it will pump this fluid into my belly, let it dwell there for a while, pump it out and pump some more fluid in over several cycles, and effectively remove the waste from my body, performing the function that my kidneys will no longer be able to.
There are a number of reasons why I prefer this to the traditional means of dialysis, so-called hemodialysis at a hospital clinic.
1. PD means I can lead a more or less normal daytime life; I can still work a full-time job, if I want.
2. PD can be done daily rather than 3 times a week in the clinic version of hemodialysis, so my blood is cleaner.
3. My diet is not as restricted on PD vs. hemodialysis.
4. The machine can be packed in a carry-on case to take on an airplane or in a car, and the supplier of the fluid and related equipment can ship it anywhere in the world, so travel remains a possibility even after beginning PD.
Despite all that, I find the prospect of dialysis daunting, to say the least. But, at least I have this option until a possible kidney transplant comes along. And given that the doctors said 30 years ago that I had 10-15 years before my kidneys would fail, I’ve done pretty well, and for that I am grateful.
Regarding transplantation, generally speaking there is a seven-to-nine year wait in order to receive a kidney from a so-called “cadaver” donor. Compatibility is important, of course, as is the health of the donor kidneys from the deceased person.
Another option is a live donor from someone who would donate directly to me. Before I say anything further about that, I want to be clear that kidney donors are very carefully screened for not just compatibility, but for their own health and also for any of the ethical considerations related to live kidney donation. Donations offered for reasons of guilt, coercion, or even bribery are ruled out. Having said that, in God’s infinite wisdom, we each have two kidneys and most of us can thrive quite well on one, so live donation is a possibility.
If this is of any interest to you at all, for a personal take on the matter I would suggest you read Carol Penner’s blog, An Undesignated Donor <http://anundesignateddonor.blogspot.ca/>, in which she describes her journey to donating a kidney to someone she doesn’t know. If you want to explore this further, you may also want to look at a Youtube video put out by the London Health Sciences Centre, Living Kidney Donation <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5XI7uYdwyQE>. You can also check out more detailed information at the website for the hospital’s Living Kidney Donation program here <http://www.lhsc.on.ca/Patients_Families_Visitors/MOTP/Kidney_Transplant/Living_Donation.htm>.
Thank you for the opportunity to share.
London, Ontario, Canada
Obviously, we can all hope and pray for the best for Russ. We sure have appreciated his participation and many thoughtful comments these last couple years.