What happens when a donor and recipient meet? . . . 2019 World Transplant Games set to open. . . . Interesting project underway in Winnipeg

If you have been impacted by kidney disease, please keep in mind that the Kamloops Kidney Support Group gathers this morning (Wednesday, Aug. 14), 10 o’clock, at the Barside Lounge and Grill inside Chances at 1250 Halston Ave. . . . Feel free to join us. . . .

If you are in the vicinity of downtown Kamloops on Monday (Aug. 19), organizers of the 2019 Kamloops Kidney Walk are holding a news conference, 2 p.m., at St. Andrews on the Square, 159 Seymour St. Join us as we announce particulars of this year’s Walk, and also introduce the event’s honourees.


What’s it like when the recipient of a kidney transplant meets the donor? Well, Chris, 21, a recipient, met his donor, Abraham, 19, on Good Morning America recently and, as you might expect, things got emotional. . . . Abraham, whose mother has started the process of becoming a donor, was asked what he would say to anyone considering it, and he responded: “I would say go for it. Reach out to a hospital and see if you’re eligible and if you are eligible, really consider it. I was in the hospital for two days. I was off painkillers in five days. I feel great.” . . .  The whole story is right here.


A lexophile, thanks to a contest in The New York Times: England has no kidney bank, but it does have a Liverpool.


Kerry Eggers of the Portland Tribune has a story right here about Doug Little, now 68, who was a 6-foot-3 forward on the Oregon Ducks basketball team in the early 1970s. . . . Today, Little is on the list and hoping for a kidney transplant.



The World Transplant Games open Saturday and run through Aug. 24 in NewcastleGateshead in the north-east area of England. . . . “The youngest participant,” reports Catherine Priestley, “is a six-year-old Argentinian girl who will compete in the ball throw, long jump and 50-metre sprint, with the oldest an 84-year-old French man taking part in the cycling, swimming and athletics.” . . . Priestley’s story is right here. . . . The Games’ website is right here. . . . It’s worth noting that the 2020 Canadian Transplant Games are scheduled for Winnipeg, Aug. 10-15.



There is an interesting project underway in Winnipeg with two doctors working to educate health care providers about how “to use a match equation than can pretty accurately predict a person’s risk of kidney failure, according to Michelle Gerwing of CTV News. . . . This all is aimed at early diagnosis of kidney disease. . . . As Dr. Navdeep Tangri, a nephrologist, explains: “If you have diabetes and kidney disease today there is a treatment out there that can delay dialysis by up to two decades and potentially prevent it all together, but all of that is non-applicable, we can’t start people on that treatment once their kidney function drops below 30-per cent.” . . . Gerwing’s story is right here.



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Introducing the Kamloops Kidney Support Group — we’re here for you. . . . 2019 Kamloops Walk to hold news conference

Early each month, I post a message to Twitter that goes something like this:

Nearly 49,000 Canadians are being treated for kidney failure. If you are one, the Kamloops Kidney Support Group will gather Saturday, Aug. 10, 9 a.m., and Wednesday, Aug. 14, 10 a.m., at Chances (Barside Lounge and Grill), 1250 Halston Ave. Join us for breakfast and conversation. #kamloops @KidneyBCY

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I also post a similar message to Facebook and send a PSA (Public Service Announcement) to various media people and outlets in the Kamloops areas.

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So . . . allow me to tell you a bit about the Kamloops Kidney Support Group (KKSG).

It was founded by three women — Edna Humphreys, who has a son who has had a kidney transplant, Dorothy Drinnan and Margaret Thompson, both of whom are enjoying life after kidney transplants. Margaret has since moved to Edmonton, however, so we carry on while she watches with interest from afar.

The KKSG doesn’t have any affiliations, medical or otherwise. We are a bunch of folks who come together twice a month, over coffee and/or breakfast, and talk about our renal-related experiences.

No one has kept track, but I would guess that we have had contact with upwards of 50 different people over the time that we have been around. People come and people go; some are regulars and others show up perhaps when they feel a need for some support or when they have a question or two.

We meet twice a month — on the second Wednesday and second Saturday — and had 17 people attend our last gathering.

Two regulars recently have started dialysis — one hemo and the other peritoneal — as they wait for the phone call that hopefully will come soon, telling them there is a match and that a transplant is in the works.

There are other people in our group who are dealing with one type of kidney issue or another, all under medical care. We have one couple who have joined us a couple of times as they seek all the information they can find, their son having been diagnosed with kidney disease.

Dorothy, who was born with one kidney, had her transplant on Sept. 23, 2013. Prior to that, she spent almost four years doing peritoneal dialysis. At that time, there wasn’t a support group or anyone she could chat with — outside the medical community — or ask questions of in a search for information.

You are asking: What kind of information?

It could be answering questions about the interview process one goes through at St. Paul’s Hospital or Vancouver General Hospital in the lead up to a potential transplant.

It could be pointing out that there isn’t a cure for kidney disease — just because someone undergoes a transplant and gets a new (used) kidney doesn’t mean he/she is cured. Yes, it’s true. While there are cures for various kinds of cancer and other diseases, there isn’t a cure for kidney disease.

The trick is to learn how to live with it. Those of us involved with the KKSG hope that we are able to help people do just that.

If you have been impacted by kidney disease, feel free to check us out.

If you live in a community other than Kamloops and wonder if such a group really is worthwhile, I highly recommend it. If you would like more information, get in touch with us.

If you are in the Kamloops area, we will be at the Barside Lounge and Grill in Chances on Saturday, 9 a.m., and Wednesday, 10 a.m.



2019 KAMLOOPS KIDNEY WALK

NEWS CONFERENCE

WHAT: Organizers of the 2019 Kamloops Kidney Walk have scheduled a news conference.

WHEN: Monday, Aug. 19, 2 p.m.

WHERE: St. Andrews on the Square, 159 Seymour St.

WHO: Organizers will outline plans. . . . Two honourees will be introduced. . . . Organizers will introduce and thank the largest single donor in the event’s 10-year history.

We look forward to seeing you there.

FMI: Edna Humphreys, 250-376-6361 (ednahumphreys@shaw.ca); Dorothy Drinnan, 250-573-2988 (ddrinnan52@gmail.com).



Kidney stone saved father’s life. . . . Visit the Kidney Community Kitchen. . . . Stevie Wonder to have transplant

It was a humbling experience to sit in my recliner on Friday evening and again on Saturday and hear from so many people via Twitter, email, text, Messenger, etc. As I sat and pecked away on my laptop all those evenings, it was easy to forget that there actually were folks out there who would be reading whatever it is that I was writing.

Thank you all so much for the kind words. They won’t be forgotten.

But considering the direction that I am taking this site, one note stood out from all the rest. Here is part of it . . .

“Best of luck with the new focus. It does hit a little close to home because three weeks ago my 78-year-old father went to the hospital at my urging to have a kidney stone checked.

“In the process, they found a tumour on one of his kidneys — fortunately, it’s early enough that he’ll be having surgery at the end of this month to have the tumour — and hopefully just a very small portion of the kidney — removed.

“It’s often not a stroke of luck to have a kidney stone, but in this case it was because, if not for that, the tumour wouldn’t have been found until it was too late.

“As the doctor told him, the kidney stone saved his life.”

And then there was the email from a WHL insider that included this:

“I am excited to continue to read your work as a kidney patient who is beginning kidney failure.”


Some food for thought from the Kidney Foundation of Canada/B.C. & Yukon Branch. . . .

One in 10 Canadians live with kidney disease or are at risk – most are unaware of this. . . .

You can lose up to 80 per cent of your kidney function before experiencing symptoms. . . .

As of December 2018, there were 665 people in B.C. waiting for (an organ) transplant, with 528 of those being kidney patients. In 2018, 335 kidney transplants were performed in B.C.


It stands to reason that diet is of utmost importance to folks who deal with kidney disease of one type or another. . . . With that in mind, you should be aware of the Kidney Community Kitchen, a creation of the Kidney Foundation of Canada. The tweet below highlights Classic Hamburgers and the recipe is available by following the link. . . . At the site, there also is an areas that allows you to browse recipes by meal type. Check it out.





It was over a month ago when Stevie Wonder informed concert-goers in London, England, that he is scheduled to undergo a kidney transplant late in September. Yes, he said, a donor has been found.

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Little is know about what got Stevie Wonder to the point where he needs a kidney transplant. He made the announcement in London to quell rumours about his health, but there don’t appear to have been any statements made since then.

Nina Shapiro, who writes about health-related issues, has more right here.


If you’re new here, Dorothy, my wife of more than 47 years, has had a kidney transplant and her immune system now is compromised. There are a lot of people walking around out there who are just like her, which is just one more reason why immunization is so important.

Langley grandfather needs kidney. . . . B.C. ranks No. 1 in living kidney donations. . . . Hey, there’s an app for that, too

Jerry Franks would love to play with his grandson, Donovan, but oftentimes just doesn’t have the energy. Why not? Because Jerry, a 64-year-old from Langley, B.C., needs a kidney transplant; in fact, he has been on dialysis for three years now — three times a week.

“His daughter Danielle has been reaching out on social media ‘and every way I know how,’ ” writes Bob Groeneveld in the Langley Advance Times, “and his son Rob has a plea for kidney donors to help ‘My best friend, my Dad’ emblazened on his business truck – along with the phone number to call to be a donor: 604-806-9027.”

Groeneveld has a whole lot more on Jerry’s story right here.



According to its Twitter account, CORE “is a non-profit dedicated to promoting donation, education and research of organ and tissue transplantation.” . . . CORE is an acronym for Centre for Organ Recovery and Education.” It is headquartered in Pittsburgh, to this tweet obviously is directed to our American friends. . . .


If you are going to be in Vancouver’s West End on Saturday, Aug. 10, some folks will have hot dogs and Chilliwack corn for you.