Bill's Journey Update September 27, 2016

Bill's Journey Update
On Friday, Bill had a series of appointments at Children's Hospital in preparation for his kidney transplant. Because his kidney function is rapidly decreasing, the medical team is hoping to start screening potential donors within the next two weeks. Family members have the best chance of being compatible, and Han and Thach are blood type "O" so they will be screened as potential donors. There are still some questions about whether An and Quyen would be suitable donors. All potential donors (and they would like to have as many as nine of them!) must have blood testing done on the same day with the hope that at least one would be compatible. So far, no one outside the immediate family has been added to the list. Han and Tu are not sure who to ask, or how to ask someone to give a kidney! (and they don't have much time) Potential donors must be at least 25, in good health, have ongoing health insurance (even though Bill's insurance will pay for all expenses) and be "O" blood type.

If a living donor can be identified within a month or two, the transplant will be scheduled quickly. If none of the potential donors screen in, another group could be identified and screened later, but Bill cannot wait too long. The next option would be to go on the "deceased" organ donor list. A kidney from a deceased donor is not the first choice, but would serve the purpose. It would take six to eight months for one to become available.

Bill's condition will require him to get dialysis if the transplant doesn't happen very soon. For this, there are two options--getting him to a hospital three times a week, or having a catheter implanted in Bill's belly so that he can do dialysis with a machine at home every night.

After the transplant, there will be frequent trips to Children's Hospital--at least one or two a month for the first year.

Tu asked whether the IGA protein that is now causing problems for Bill's kidney would be likely to cause problems again with the new kidney. The doctor said that it is possible (they don't understand exactly why it is happening, so they can't say for sure) but he assured Tu that they would not be offering the transplant if they did not think it would be beneficial for Bill.

In the meantime, the medical team is doing what they can to make sure that Bill's "recipient evaluation" is as high as possible before the surgery takes place, and this will probably involve giving him some some medications and injections.

 

 

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