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William G. Davis

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Blogs by William G. Davis

My Unknown Friend - Thanks for the Kidney
2/3/2008 9:37:46 AM    [ Flag as Spam or Inappropriate ]

Eleven years ago I received a death sentence.

It was the same sentence that had been handed down to my grandmother, my aunt, my mother and cousins too numerous to list. I was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease, a hereditary affliction that has plagued my motherís side of the family for generations.

The condition is particularly insidious in that it is not painful, and without blood tests one wouldnít know one had it. Over a period of years, cysts form in the kidneys until the organ eventually ceases to function. When it no longer works, the victim succumbs to the inability to of the body to eliminate its liquid waste.

There are no cures for this disease. There are treatments. The most common is kidney dialysis by which the patientís blood is circulated through a machine and filter that strains the blood of most of its impurities. The second treatment is a kidney transplant whereby a donated organ is grafted into the patientís body.

I was lucky to have been treated by a very knowledgeable physician. Through medication and attention to my diet, he and my wife kept my kidneys adequately functioning for a number of years. He understood the progression of the disease and prepared me for eventual dialysis. He also arranged for me to be placed on the nationwide kidney transplant list.

Two and a half years ago I had to go on dialysis. My denial that I was sick finally met reality. Though at the time I felt my life had ended, I adapted well to the treatment. It required being on the machine three and a half hours three days a week. With commuting time to and from the dialysis clinic, that meant five hours a day or a third of my waking life three times a week for treatment. Thatís not bad considering the alternative is death, but it still puts a dent in your life.

I remained on the kidney transplant list for nearly five years. It required my carrying a cell phone with me at all times, so that if an organ became available, I could be contacted and get to the hospital within hours. When you first go on the list, you expect a call at any time. As the years pass, you begin to think that it will never happen. Thatís the way I felt until a month ago when I got the call from Shands Hospital at the University of Florida. ďWe have a kidney. Do you want it?Ē

Of course I did, and the operation so far has been a success. The doctors are pleased with my progress. I had almost forgotten how it feels to have properly functioning plumbing.

This means a new way of life for me. I would like to thank the family and loved ones of the person who was considerate enough to donate his/her organs. I have no idea who the donor was, but organ donation is one of the most loving things one human being can do for another.

If you have not yet designated yourself to be an organ donor, think about it. It is one way to help another human being when you can no longer help yourself.

If you have volunteered to be an organ donor, I thank you for myself and all future recipients.

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More Blogs by William G. Davis
•  My Unknown Friend - Thanks for the Kidney - Sunday, February 03, 2008  
• Why We're Failing in Iraq - Thursday, March 29, 2007
• The Wisdom of George Carlin - Thursday, March 01, 2007
• Iraq - Time to Go - Thursday, February 22, 2007
• Iraq - What Now? - Wednesday, February 07, 2007
• Comic Look Back at 2006 - Monday, December 25, 2006
• Comic Look Back at 2006 - Monday, December 25, 2006
• The Destiny of a Senator's Soul - Thursday, November 16, 2006
• Great Job. Big Pay. Little Work - Thursday, October 26, 2006
• Scary Stuff - Our Chance to Fight Back - Sunday, October 08, 2006
• Scary Stuff - Why They Aren't Talking About It - Saturday, September 30, 2006
• Scary Stuff #2 - Friday, September 22, 2006
• Scary Stuff - Friday, September 15, 2006
• What's the Real Problem? - Saturday, September 02, 2006
• War on Terror - Solutions Anyone? - Saturday, August 12, 2006
• World War III - Part Deux - Thursday, August 03, 2006
• Has World War Three Already Begun? - Saturday, July 29, 2006
• God Bless The Whistleblower - Saturday, July 15, 2006
• Beware of The Wedge! - Friday, June 30, 2006
• New Political Party - Is It The Answer? - Monday, June 26, 2006
• War in Iraq - Dazed and Confused - Friday, June 16, 2006
• Naming Names - The Senators Who Sold Us Out - Thursday, June 08, 2006
• Sealing The Borders -- The Game - Monday, June 05, 2006
• Sealing Our Southern Border - Wednesday, May 31, 2006
• Aliens Taking Over L.A.! - Friday, May 26, 2006
• The U.S. Senate - Selling Us Out Again! - Saturday, May 20, 2006
• The Fires of Political Rage - Thursday, May 18, 2006
• Congress, Big Business and Illegal Aliens - Sunday, May 14, 2006
• ANSWER Manipulates Illegal Immigrants - Thursday, May 11, 2006
• 911 Loose Change -Are All the "Facts" Straight? - Tuesday, May 09, 2006
• Presidential Election Strategy for 2008 - Monday, May 08, 2006
• The Big Club" - Saturday, May 06, 2006
• Critical Mass - Thursday, July 07, 2005

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