A married couple from Grimsby in England are planning to undergo kidney transplant surgery. Paula will donate her kidney to her husband Kevin, who has polycystic kidney disease. The original source article can be read here, at the Grimsby Telegraph’s website.
About Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)
Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is an inherited condition that causes cysts (fluid-filled sacs) to develop in the kidneys, and other areas may also be affected. These cysts can cause damage. Over time the kidneys can lose function and, in some cases, fail.
Kevin first found out that his kidneys weren’t working properly six years ago in 2012 after he went to the doctor for routine tests and found out that his Glomerular Filtration Rate was low. Glomerular Filtration Rate is used to estimate kidney function by measuring how much blood passes through the glomeruli (tiny structures that filter waste products from the blood) each minute. Kevin’s Glomerular Filtration Rate was 19, but, according to the National Kidney Foundation, it should have been over 60.
After receiving these results, Kevin had his kidney function monitored for changes. Last year, around October, the doctors began discussing kidney transplant options with Kevin, and Paula made an offer to donate one of hers. By the following February, Kevin’s Glomerular Filtration Rate had fallen to below 10 and he needed regular dialysis.
Paula, who has been married to Kevin for 33 years, says that donating a kidney is “not as simple” as what is shown on TV. In order to make the donation, she had to undergo extensive medical testing, including confirming that she was a match for him, something that isn’t that common for a married couple. Paula also had to reduce her weight and so far has lost over 10kg, with plans to lose more.
She says that she offered to donate because it can take a long time to find a donor, and she wants Kevin to feel better. Kevin has told her that she doesn’t need to donate her kidney and that sometimes he feels bad that she will have surgery because of him. However, he says,
“we have been married for 33 years and it is a good way to show our love really.”