Having transplant in Vancouver? Kidney suite might be for you. . . . KKSG gatherings set for September

If you or someone you know is a candidate for a kidney transplant and lives outside of Vancouver, you will learn in the lead-up that a stay of at least a couple of months in the big city will be necessary after surgery.

And with the cost of accommodations being what they are in the big smoke, well, you might have questions.

You should know, then, that there are kidney suites available in Vancouver . . .

The Kidney Foundation of Canada, BC & Yukon Branch offers seven kidney suites within Vancouver. These are for post-kidney-transplant recipients who have come to Vancouver from outside the Lower Mainland and need to stay in town for up to two months after surgery. These suites are fully furnished, and are located near major transit lines.

These suites are free for those who meet our financial criteria (low income) and just $35 per night for those who do not.

There is more right here.


If you happen to live in Kamloops and area, you may be wondering about the next gatherings of the Kamloops Kidney Support Group (KKSG). . . . We get together on the second Wednesday and second Saturday of every month. In September, that will be Sept. 11, 10 a.m., and Sept. 14, 9 a.m. . . . All coffee drinking and eating of eggs takes place at the Barside Lounge and Grill at Chances Casino, 1250 Halston Ave. . . . Believe me when I say that these gatherings are informal.


SOME ODDS AND ENDS . . .

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 mid-August, in the region served by Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops, there were 1,378 patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) being monitored by nephrologists. Of those, 140 have undergone transplants, and 114 are on dialysis. . . .

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


Some numbers from a piece by the editorial board of The New York Times from earlier this week:

About 20 Americans die each week waiting for organs. . . .

More than 100,000 people in the United States are currently waiting for organs, and only about 35,000 will receive them in 2019. . . .

That piece also included this:

“Far too few people are donating organs to begin with, and far too few of the organs that have been donated are making their way to patients in waiting. Experts say that misconceptions about donor eligibility requirements and, in some states, cumbersome registration processes are preventing nearly half of those who support organ donation from becoming registered donors. Outdated standards are causing transplant surgeons to reject some 75,000 usable organs every year, according to a Washington Post analysis. And an astounding lack of accountability and oversight in the nation’s creaking, monopolistic organ transplant system is allowing hundreds of thousands of potential organ donations to fall through the cracks.”

The complete piece is right here and it’s well worth your time if you are interesting in the American transplantation system.





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Stroup family cries tears of joy after organs donated. . . . Daughter had registered two years ago as donor

Folks in Kamloops will gather at McDonald Park on Sept. 22 for the annual Kidney Walk. If you would like to participate, we register at 10 a.m., walk at 11, and have breakfast when it’s all done. The Brock Central Lions Club supplies the breakfast — pancakes, sausage and coffee — by donation.

We held a news conference on Monday at St. Andrews on the Square. If you are curious about how the media saw what we had to announce, here’s a look . . .

Chad Klassen of CFJC-TV filed a video report and wrote a story, both of which are right here.

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John Luke Kieper of KamloopsBCNow was on hand, too, and he posted his story right here.

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Dairai Mutandiro of Kamloops Matters joined us and wrote this piece right here.



Tara Stroup’s daughter, Madeline, was in a coma for seven days after being involved in a car crash in Abbotsford, B.C., on July 26. When the family decided to take Madeline off life support and donate her organs, they discovered that she had registered as a donor. . . . Tara spoke with Estefania Duran of CBC News about the decisions involved and the aftermath. That story is right here.




Details of 2019 Kamloops Kidney Walk to be announced today . . .

If you are in the vicinity of downtown Kamloops this afternoon (Monday, Aug. 19), feel free to join organizers of the 2019 Kamloops Kidney Walk for a news conference at St. Andrews on the Square, 159 Seymour St.

We will be announcing details of the 2019 Walk, introducing this year’s honourees, and accepting the largest single donation in the event’s 10-year history.

It all starts at 2 p.m.



Just in case you missed them, here are stories about two people who live in Kamloops, both in need of a kidney transplant.

Vic Morin was profiled by Todd Sullivan of Kamloops This Week in March, and that story is right here.

Julie Dodds went public earlier this month through a post on Facebook, after which Eric Thompson of kamloopsmatters.com wrote a story that is right here.



A major story involving adult lung transplants broke late last week in Vancouver where a machine has been developed that, according to a news release, “allows lungs to live outside the body for up to 12 hours after retrieval.” . . . The news release continues: “Lungs that might initially be rejected for transplant can be reassessed, repaired and reconditioned in a bubble-like machine.” . . . This is absolutely huge news for the 40 adults waiting for transplants in B.C. . . . The complete news release is right here.

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.



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.