Friday, 25 May 2018

My journey as a potential living kidney transplant donor, part 2

Small steps.

This morning I had a blood sample taken by one of the nurses at my GP's surgery. The nurse wasn't familiar with the process re transplants but decided to use a practice form as well as the one sent by Suzanne. My little drop of blood will be sent to a local lab to ascertain my blood group and I'm to check in a week with the surgery. I'll get a printed report which I can send to Suzanne.

Hancock fans will be relieved to hear I didn't have to give an armful.

I cycled back home, over a steep hill, into a headwind and reminded myself that it wasn't as tough as enduring dialysis three times a week. Jamie is, in fact, an inspiration to me; retaining his sense of humour and stoicism through his illness. Amongst other things I'm hoping this thought might help me through any difficulties on my ride across France.

At home, the information pack from Suzanne had arrived. I began reading some of the stuff over lunch. In a list of questions was one not included in the questionnaire I'd completed the other day. Had I ever had Lyme Disease? Well, yes, in 2014 when I'd had a bulls-eye rash around one knee. This being a classic sign of the condition, my GP prescribed antibiotics, which meant no alcohol right through the Christmas of that year. Oh dear! But that's not as bad as dialysis three times a week, eh?

I phoned Suzanne. She was unsure, but doubtful this was a contraindication. She'd need to check with the consultant nephrologist (kidney specialist). We had pleasant chat though and it seems, once the blood test is done, I'll have a phone consultation with her re the whole process. Shortly after this I'll be passed over to the Living Donor Transplant Co-ordinator local to me who'll oversee the rest of the testing process. It was also mentioned that, if all goes well, Jamie and I will be interviewed by an independent assessor appointed by the Human Transplant Authority who will check all is in order legally. This will take place either local to me or in South Wales but we both need to attend, so one of us will need to travel. But that's a long way away right now. And when I returned from walking the dogs just now I found an email from Suzanne reassuring me that the Lyme Disease wasn't a problem. Phew! Talk about ups and downs.

Following yesterday's post (click older posts below this to find it) I've received lots of compliments. I've been very touched by these but I'm really not fishing for praise in writing. Rather, I'm hoping to raise awareness of the effects of chronic kidney disease and, in particular, the concept and process of becoming a living kidney donor. I'm grateful for the lovely comments though. Thanks to you all.

Watch here for the next update. You can get that in a number of ways. If you follow me on Twitter you'll see a Tweet linking to each blog post. You can, if you wish, follow by email, typing your email address in the box on the left side of my blog; in which case you'll get an email alert for each new post. If you're a Blogger user you can follow my blog by using the button below the pictures relating to my existing followers, again on the left side of my blog.

Have a couple of gratuitous pup pics to make you smile...

...then spare a thought in your busy day for my friend Jamie and others like him.


  1. This is fantastic Geoff. re if you have to travel to Wales, I would be happy to chip a few bob in to the kitty, re costs.

    1. Thanks Dawn. That's kind of you but there's a scheme whereby you can have expenses such as travel reimbursed. I believe it's through a govt agency


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