DL Life Logo March 25,2015 - - - - 123,231 AMERICANS ARE CANDIDATES ON THE UNOS TRANSPLANT WAIT LIST DL Life Logo 101,699 waiting for a kidney DL Life Logo 15,289 wait-listed for a liver DL Life Logo 1,078 waiting for a pancreasDL Life Logo 2,009 needing a Kidney-PancreasDL Life Logo 4,096 waiting for a life-saving heartDL Life Logo 1,609 waiting for a lungDL Life Logo 39 waiting for a heart-lungDL Life Logo 243 waiting for small bowelDL Life Logo One organ donor has the opportunity to save up to 8 lives DL Life Logo One tissue donor has the opportunity to save and -or enhance the lives of 50 or more individuals DL Life Logo An average of 21 people die everyday while waiting for a transplant. DL Life Logo You have the power to SAVE Lives by becoming an organ, eye and tissue donor, so what are you waiting for? To learn how to register click HEREDL Life Logo

Monday, April 27, 2015

N.J.'s organ donation tally: 460 lives saved last year

NJ.com | Kathleen O'Brien

Last year just 282 families were confronted with a tough decision at an extremely difficult time: Should they authorize the donation of their dying relative's organs?

The ones that said "Yes" had a hand in saving nearly 300 lives last year, according to the NJ Sharing Network, the non-profit group designated for the recovery and placement of donated organs and tissue for most of the state.Kidney donations from 166 living donors boosted the total of lives saved to 460.

More than 70,000 people die in New Jersey every year, according to state statistics, and at least 2.5 million residents have registered as organ and tissue donors. Those large numbers might lead to the assumption there are plenty of donors to serve the need.Yet the medical reality is the vast majority of them won't qualify to donate their organs. They were either too sick or old before their deaths, or if younger and healthier, died in situations that make their organs medically unsuitable for transplantation.

Both the person and the circumstances have to be just right for transplantation - a combination that happened for those 282 families."When we let families know how rare it is, that's a big surprise for them," said Jan Hines, manager of hospital services for the network.Of those families, 175 authorized organ donation from their deceased loved one last year.

Another 166 people were living donors of kidneys.Together, living and deceased donors saved the lives of 460 transplant recipients. (Some received multiple transplanted organs.)Kidneys accounted for the most transplants, at 168, with 55 livers, 2 pancreases, 66 hearts, and 12 kidney/pancreas combinations joining the life-saving tally.A separate category of tissue donations - including skin, corneas, bone, and heart valves - jumped by 68 percent, to 670 donors in 2014, the network reported.Over that same time period, however, 143 people registered at with New Jersey transplant program died while on the waiting list. That's one person every 2 1/2 days. Another 200 were removed from the waiting list because they became too sick to receive a transplant. Continue reading.

 

How pro wrestling saved the life of a lung transplant patient

CBC Ca

Kay Johansen struggles everyday to do what almost all of us take for granted.

Breathe.

Johansen, 42, has been waiting for a donated lung for half her life. She needs an oxygen tank to breathe and must carefully plan out her meds if she goes out.

Eight years ago, her brother died sending her into a depression. She was ready to give up.

"I've gone through a lot of anger and just being kind of upset about it. Not knowing why it's taking so long."

Then something happened that she credits with saving her life.

She attended a professional wrestling match — a Prairie Wrestling Alliance card at a small Edmonton venue.

"That one night I went to wrestling, all of that was just drained from me because I got to yell, I got to argue, I got to cheer.

"All that frustration and everything and hope was put into yelling back at the show and I was hooked." Continue reading.

 

Teenager who had first paediatric kidney transplant ever in Temple Street hospital returns to hospital to celebrate 100th transplant

Irish Independent

Courtney Kealy from Slane, Co Meath never had a bite to eat until she was six years old when she had her kidney transplant.

Courtney was just five days old when doctors discovered that her kidneys had not formed properly. Her organs were dysplastic, or congenitally mal-developed after multiple cysts had replaced renal tissue.

Her first dialysis tube was inserted when she was only eight days old.

Life in the Kealy family home at Stanley Heights revolved around Courtney’s condition and her need for kidney dialysis.

Today, Courtney told Newstalk's Breakfast today: "After the transplant, I could do a lot more than I could do before... I could go simple places like swimming, or playing sports... [it was great] not having to watch and be careful with your kidneys, being hooked up to machines."

"My first food was chicken nuggets and 'til now I still love chicken nuggets."

As a sick child, Courtney remembers how "it was really annoying - doctors and nurses poking you and coming in every five minutes, and being hooked up to machines." Continue reading.

 

Transplant Institute delivers one person, one kidney and one more chance

KCBD | Karin McCay

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - "The 14th floor, that's where I was at." Rosemary Gonzales points to a tall building in Dallas, a tower of hope 350 miles from home. "Come on girls," she says, "Let's walk."

Life is sweeter now for Rosemary, thanks to a 39-year-old woman and a letter that has yet to be written.

Rosemary walks with two of her sisters and tells them, "I would like to thank them. I do plan to do that some day."

Ten years ago, Rosemary went to the doctor feeling ill. Four hours later, she was diagnosed with kidney failure.

Her sister, Sylvia, answered the sudden call for a living donor transplant. "I was a match, so I said yes, of course!"

The transplant was picture perfect, but Rosemary rejected Sylvia's kidney.

The family was devastated.

Sylvia says, "I was upset, not for me. I was upset because it didn't help her out. I wanted it to work." Continue reading.

 

 

Local group hopes to raise awareness about organ donation

WBNS 10News | Brittany Tate

BRUNSWICK, Ga. (AP) — Just eight years ago, Jim Knight was in need of a pancreas and kidney transplant. But through the selfless act of charity, Knight received the two organs necessary to return to living a healthy, productive and normal life.

Now celebrating his 50th birthday, Knight will be the first to tell you that though he doesn't like to talk about having accepted a transplant from someone, he is grateful for their donation.

"One organ donor can potentially save the lives of eight people, and enhance (and positively improve) the lives of up to 60 people," Knight said, who is president of the Brunswick Transplant Support Group and a member of LifeLink of Georgia's Brunswick Transplant Awareness Group.

With April being National Donate Life Month, Knight feels now is the time for people to understand that the donation of organ tissue can give someone else a second chance at life.

Unlike Knight, more than 123,000 Americans are waiting for their lifesaving organ or tissue transplants; 4,800 of which are Georgians, according to LifeLink of Georgia, a nonprofit community service organization dedicated to the recovery of organs and tissues for transplantation. Continue reading.

 

Tiny heart wanted: one family's experience with infant organ donation

The Guardian | Hope Mills

Wyatt Plogger was born missing the left side of his heart. He was put on a wait list shortly after his birth with 42 other infants under 12 months to receive a heart, which are in short supply. Photograph: Supplied

Where does one find such a small heart? After the surgery meant to fix their baby’s heart defect didn’t take, the Ploggers learned the heart finds you

She tried to imagine how the heart would arrive.

He’d left her at midnight, her tiny, blue-gray boy. They’d taken him to the operating room to prep. The heart, they told her, should be there by 5am.

Throughout the night, she could hear the helicopters taking off and landing from the hospital’s helipad. She could hear ambulance sirens, too, pulling up to the emergency room on the first floor. How would it arrive? Which sound belonged to them?

Stephanie and Austin Plogger found out that their third child was missing the left side of his heart – hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HPLS) – in her 24th week of pregnancy. Roughly 1,000 babies with HPLS are born each year in the US, and it’s only within the last couple of decades that the treatment has shifted from palliative care. It’s so serious, and can be such a wrenching medical experience, that the Plogger’s local cardiologist asked if they wanted to keep or terminate the pregnancy.

Initially, termination was not an option. "But when I thought of how much he would have to endure I questioned that," Stephanie says. "I waffled for a day, but then I came back to reality and told myself I was given this child for a reason." She got to work researching.

They met with the specialists at the University of Virginia’s Pediatric Heart Center in Charlottesville. "I felt like a 100 pounds had been lifted off. They regularly perform the series of heart surgeries he would need. They know what to expect." Continue reading.

 

 

Allegheny General Hospital Honors Organ Donors With Annual Rose Garden Ceremony

WESA - Pittsburgh NPR | Liz Reid

Sheila Gold met her best friend Joan Dufore under tragic circumstances: Dufore is the mother of the woman whose liver Gold received after she was diagnosed with liver disease.

Dufore, of Norwich, Ohio, said her daughter always had an altruistic streak, begging her parents to adopt the orphans she saw on television commercials for the nonprofit Save the Children.

“She always wanted to save people and … I always told her ‘We can’t save the world,’ but she did,” Dufore said. “She saved six people.”

Dufore made comments at the 8th annual Rose Garden Ceremony at Allegheny General Hospital on the North Side Monday afternoon.

Each year, a rose bush is planted somewhere on the hospital’s campus to honor those whose organ donations have saved lives and the medical staff who make such transplants possible. Continue reading.

 

Man hopes kidney donor will ‘share the spare’

Panama City News Herald | Zack MacDonald

Karen Tannen adjust a pin on her son Joshua Tannen’s shirt. Joshua Tannen had his first kidney transplant at the age of 14. PATTI BLAKE

PANAMA CITY — If smiles were kidneys, Joshua Tannen wouldn’t have a worry.

Tannen, 27, is a young man wading among a sea of about 4,000 hopeful organ recipients in Florida, but in a world of limited supply to meet such a large demand, he has been on a waiting list that only diminishes by about 10 percent each year. Now, Tannen, who has spent hours each night of the past three years on dialysis, is pleading with the community to help him return to a life of normalcy.

“It’s frustrating being on dialysis for 11 hours a night,” Tannen said. “I can’t get up or move around. I don’t have the freedom I used to.”

Tannen first experienced renal failure at the age of 14. His mother came to his aid and donated her kidney to spare the life of her son. But after more than 10 years of relatively smooth sailing with the kidney donation, Tannen’s body rejected the organ and placed him back in a line where 4,722 in the country die each year waiting for an organ. Continue reading.

 

Kidney transplant halted after donor program shuts down

NBC 2 | Andrea Hubbell

The live kidney transplant program for Lee Memorial Health System is shut down at this time.

The program is being investigated after a man died from complications after donating a kidney to his father. Now 25 patients are stuck in limbo waiting for transplants.

Jimmy Serrago II was so close to getting a new kidney - and a new chance at life. Now he's back to square one.

Just two days before a Cape Coral man was scheduled to get a kidney, his family was notified it wasn't going to happen. Jimmy Serrago II is 21. His kidneys failed just a few years ago.

"He fights everyday and then we were just so close at getting this and then they tell us they're closing the program," Jimmy Serrago, Jimmy's father, said.

Lee Memorial Health has temporarily shut down its live donor program. We found out that a recent donor died after surgery.

"I looked at my dad and I was like well where do we go from here, and we both had no idea what to say... we just didn't know what to do," Jimmy Serrago II, said.

According to a spokesperson, the donor died from a rare but known complication. Twenty-five patients and donors are enrolled in the live donor program. Continue reading.

NBC-2.com WBBH News for Fort Myers, Cape Coral & Naples, Florida

 

‘I really needed the kidney transplant and I’m so lucky that I got one’

Irish Examiner | Kelly O'Brien

From the moment she was born, Courtney Kealy had to have a kidney transplant. She was born with kidney dysplasia, a condition most affected babies do not survive.

Tube-fed and hooked up to machines, Courtney spent the first few years of her life on dialysis, in and out of hospital, and waiting for a suitable donor.

"I would be on medication in the morning and the night time and I was fed through a tube in my nose because I found eating difficult. I had a few tubes in my stomach connected to machines. It was very difficult."

At the age of five, Courtney finally found her match and became the first person to have a kidney transplant at Temple Street Children’s Hospital.

"It was three weeks before I was allowed to go home. Now I just have to go for check-ups. I really needed the transplant and I’m so lucky I got one. I’m so grateful to the staff at the hospital and for everything they did for me."

Today, Courtney is a happy, healthy 18-year-old studying for her Leaving Certificate. She hopes to go on and study nursing. Continue reading.

 

 

Give the gift of life- organ recipient tells her story

WDJT - CBS 58 | Bill Walsh

Organ donation saved Meghan Zierke's life, she is hoping others will listen to her story and be inspired to more lives.

Zierke shared that story live on the CBS 58 News at Four. At 16, she was diagnosed with a condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, which causes the heart muscles to thicken so that heart can't function well. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is genetic-- her grandparents, mom, and brother all had it. Her mom had a heart transplant in 1997 and unfortunately passed away at age 43. Her brother has had two heart transplants.

By the time Zierke was in her late 20's, she couldn't walk without getting sick and needed a transplant. She waited four months for a transplant, and still remembers the day she got the call to notify her that she would get a new heart. "I fell to my knees. I thought about the family who gave me the opportunity for hope for a future," she said.

Dr. Frank Downey performed the successful operation at Aurora St. Luke's on September 11, 2012. He says the operation is not becoming more common. "It's been the same number of transplants performed in a year's time because of the lack of donors," Downey said. Continue reading

CBS 58

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Little Matthew has waited SEVEN years for a kidney transplant now he is backing Teddy's campaign

Mirror UK | By Andrew Gregory , Tracey Kandohla

Matthew Pietrzyk, who has no kidneys, spends 12 hours at a time hooked to a dialysis machine to stay alive

A boy of nine who has spent seven years waiting for a kidney transplant has made an emotional plea for donors.

Matthew Pietrzyk, who has no kidneys, spends 12 hours at a time hooked to a dialysis machine to stay alive.

Urging people to support our #TeddysStory campaign and sign up as donors, he said: "Please try your hardest to help, not just for me but for all people who need transplants."

Matthew, of Glenfield, Leics, has set up a Facebook campaign appealing for a donor and has received offers from across the world – but there have been no suitable matches.

The youngster said: "I just want to do stuff that normal kids can do. I’d love to go on a sleepover, have a bath or jump in a pool."

Chelsea fan Matthew has been inspired by the Mirror’s amazing story of Britain’s youngest donor Teddy Houlston. Continue reading.

 

 

Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon: Two people, one heart

The Oklahoman | Eric Horne

Brendon McLarty was an organ donor, and Kerry Creach was the lucky recipient of a new heart — the same heart that pushed McLarty to excel in baseball and football at Perry High School.

As Kerry Creach crossed the finish line at the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon on Sunday, he was surrounded by gray T-shirts with the slogan “Two Families, One Heart” printed on the back.

Creach’s name is on the shirt, too, right underneath the name of Brendon McLarty. A giant red heart wraps around their names, keeping them close together in the center of the shirt.

That kind of closeness can’t even begin to describe the relationship between McLarty and Creach. McLarty, who died in 2012 at age 16 from an asthma attack, is literally a part of Creach — the reason why Creach was able to celebrate at the finish line with McLarty’s family.

Brendon McLarty was an organ donor, and Creach was the lucky recipient of a new heart — the same heart that pushed Brendon to excel in baseball and football at Perry High School.

“It’s amazing,” Creach said of his journey. “I know I’m extremely fortunate.

“It’s just really an honor to be able to walk and meet and spend time with Brendon’s family,”

Brendon suffered his asthma attack at home on the last day of his sophomore year. His heart soon found a new home, but Creach and the McLarty family didn’t connect face-to-face immediately. According to the McLartys, if the family of an organ donor wants to communicate with an organ recipient or vice versa, letters are recommended for the first year following a transplant. Continue reading.

 

Strangers had a heart, and saved her life

The Toronto Sun | Maryam Shah

Heart transplant recipient Ryley Mitchell. (Supplied photo)

TORONTO - Ryley Mitchell would not be the cheerful and healthy nine-year-old she is today without the courage of a family who agreed to donate their child’s heart.

“If she didn’t (receive the transplant), she wouldn’t be here now,” Ryley’s mother, Joanna Mitchell, said.

Ryley was two months old when she was diagnosed with a genetic heart condition.

By the time she was seven months old, doctors told Joanna and her husband that their little girl needed a heart transplant in order to survive.

Fortunately, they received a call about an available heart 10 days after Ryley was put on the waiting list.

“It had to have been a young child,” Joanna said, although she and her family know nothing of the organ donor aside from the fact that the donor was male. Continue reading.

 

Ten years later, multi-organ transplant patient going strong

Loyola Medicine

Ten years ago Andrew Gaumer underwent a heart and double-lung transplant. He recounts the road to his surgery and the support of his exceptional transplant team, including Erin Lowery, MD, and Karen Pelletiere, RN.

 

Living Green Ribbon of Hope Ends Organ and Tissue Donation Week

Brant News | Victoria Gray

Living Green Ribbon of Hope Victoria Gray Members of the community gathered to take part in the Brant County chapter of the Kidney Foundation of Canada's Living Green Ribbon of Hope at Harmony Square Sunday.

Mackenzie Walchuk was given a new lease on life seven years ago and wants others to have the same opportunity.

The 19-year-old spoke at the Brant County chapter of the Kidney Foundation of Canada's Green Ribbon of Hope to end National Organ and Tissue Donor Awareness Week at Harmony Square on Sunday.

Walchuk was diagnosed with chronic liver failure at the age of three and spent most of her childhood sick and in hospital.

"When you are a child who is sick most of the time it's really hard because you can't do the things other kids can and you miss out on a lot," she said. "You also have to grow up really fast because you are exposed to a lot of traumatic things in the hospital."

Liz Giacinti, president of the local kidney foundation chapter said the event is geared toward raising awareness about organ and tissue donation in the area. Continue reading.

 

 

Local group hopes to raise awareness about organ donation

The Brunswick Herald | Brittany Tate
BRUNSWICK, GA. Just eight years ago, Jim Knight was in need of a pancreas and kidney transplant. But through the selfless act of charity, Knight received the two organs necessary to return to living a healthy, productive and normal life.
Now celebrating his 50th birthday, Knight will be the first to tell you that though he doesn't like to talk about having accepted a transplant from someone, he is grateful for their donation.
"One organ donor can potentially save the lives of eight people, and enhance (and positively improve) the lives of up to 60 people," Knight said, who is president of the Brunswick Transplant Support Group and a member of LifeLink of Georgia's Brunswick Transplant Awareness Group.
With April being National Donate Life Month, Knight feels now is the time for people to understand that the donation of organ tissue can give someone else a second chance at life.
Unlike Knight, more than 123,000 Americans are waiting for their lifesaving organ or tissue transplants; 4,800 of which are Georgians, according to LifeLink of Georgia, a nonprofit community service organization dedicated to the recovery of organs and tissues for transplantation. Continue reading


The gift of life: Mossman happy to donate kidney

Hill Country Community Journal | Bonnie Arnold

Pat Mossman of kerrville, right, donated one of his kidneys to his brother-in-law Tony Messenger, left, in June 1998, his gift of life to Messenger who still survives, now using his third donated organ. Mossman said he'd do it again and wishes more people would consider giving the same gift.

Pat Mossman of Kerrville is a "living donor," one who gave a kidney to another person and allowed both of them to enjoy "the gift of life."

"I gave one of my kidneys to my brother-in-law Tony Messenger on June 8, 1998. That kidney is gone now, but it lasted 10 years," Mossman said.

"This situation popped up because of a family situation. Tony was already on dialysis," he said. "But I probably would have done it anyway. His mother was a match, but for health reasons she couldn’t donate."

Mossman said the advance preparation included a lot of medical tests and a detailed investigation of his family history, too.

"Tony’s family members had already been tested," he said. Messenger is Mossman’s wife Deb’s brother.

The first thing was a blood test, he said, and he got the message that he was a candidate.

Tests began two or three months before the surgery took place.

"The transplant team investigated whether there was any diabetes or kidney stones or anything to put the donor at risk," he said, as gifting one kidney was going to put him in the situation of living with only one kidney himself.

"I talked to a few people, including doctors, about what happens if I need one, too," Mossman said."I talked to a few people, including doctors, about what happens if I need one, too," Mossman said. Continue reading.

 

 

Transplant candidates need help, not brushoff

The Scranton Times Tribune | BY MAUREEN CRONIN AND REP. JOHN SABATINA JR.

TIMES-TRIBUNE FILE Karen Corby speaks in 2012 outside the family home in Potttsville about how her son, Paul Corby, right, was denied a heart transplant because of his autism.

Imagine a parent or grandparent of a dying child who is in desperate need of a lung, kidney or heart transplant being told by hospital administrators that due to a physical or intellectual disability the candidate has been rejected for the lifesaving surgical procedure.

That dreadful scenario was experienced by Karen Corby of Pottsville when doctors at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania informed her that her son, Paul, was refused a lifesaving slot on the heart transplant list because of his intellectual disability. Diagnosed with left ventricular noncompaction five years ago, Paul’s only hope is a heart transplant.

"As if hearing the diagnosis wasn’t bad enough," his mother recalled, "we then

had to learn that he is not a candidate for this lifesaving surgery because of his

autism."

Ms. Corby was understandably devastated by this unexpected and inexplicable

turn of events. She was not the first, nor would she be the last, parent to be

confronted with this unconscionable medical mischief.

The need for organ donors is great. There are well over 100,000 people in the United States are on waiting lists for an organ transplant and healthy organs are a rare and valuable commodity. Many people die while awaiting an organ transplant. Rationing systems have been implemented, but subjective notions of individual worth have made it difficult to differentiate between discriminatory policies and sound clinical judgment. Instances of blatant intolerance abound. Continue reading.

 

 

 

Transplant Heart Pumps for 8k Race Benefiting MORA in Flowood

WJTV | By Jacob Kittilstad

Every weekend there's a different run. 5k's, 10k's, marathons...you know the drill.

They're all raising money for great programs or charities. But news stations can't always go in-depth. And the races are sometimes hard to cover without someone on-the-course.

So how do we fix that?

Simple enough answer: we enter producer Lori Buhring in a race, strap a camera to her head, and turn her loose.

Click 'play' on the video below to take a look at what she found Saturday in Flowood and the 2015 Racing for Donation 8k Run/Walk.

The race is coordinated by the Mississippi Organ Recovery Agency (MORA). It's raising money for education on the issue.

"Nationally there are more than 123,000 people waiting for transplants. One organ donor can save eight lives," Becky Pierson, manager of community outreach for MORA, said. Continue reading.

WJTV News Channel 12

 

Do religious people donate their organs less often?

Why Evolution is True | Jerry Coyne
On the morning news, which I watch while getting dressed, there was an item about a teenager with cancer who, as her last act, donated her corneas to her mother, who herself was losing her sight. That was touching, but it got me thinking. Are religious people less likely to donate their organs after death than are atheists?
I can’t be “arsed” (to use a Cunk-ism) to spend a lot of time looking for data to answer this question, but two sites (Wikipedia and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) suggest that the policy of many churches is in fact to encourage organ donation. Wikipedia, for instance, says this:
"All major religions either accept organ donation or accept the right of individual members to make their own decision. Most religions like the Roman Catholic Church are in favour of organ donation as acts of charity and as a means of saving a life. Jains, who regard compassion to be a main principle of their faith, donate organs pro-actively. Some impose certain restrictions. For example, Jehovah’s Witnesses require that organs be drained of any blood due to their interpretation of the disallowance of blood transfusion from the Bible and Muslims require that the donor have provided written consent in advance.Orthodox Judaism considers it obligatory if it will save a life, as long as the donor is considered dead as defined by Jewish law, which is a matter of debate among different rabbis. A few groups disfavor organ transplantation or donation; notably, these include Shinto[4] and those who follow the folk customs of the Gypsies." Continue reading.

National Donate Life Month highlights major need for donors

WTNH | Micah Bailey

HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Despite all of the public awareness about the topic of organ donation, the number of people who are registered donors in Connecticut is still less than fifty percent. During National Donate Life Month in April, the New England Organ Bank is hosting several events to increase the number of registered organ, eye and tissue donors.

Joining us Sunday on Good Morning Connecticut, Mark Brevard, the Family and Community Services Coordinator for the New England Organ Bank, and Carolyn Fletcher, mother of an organ donor, talk about the importance of registering as an organ, eye and tissue donor.

Currently, close to 120,000 men, women and children in the United States in need of a lifesaving transplant. Largely due to the rarity of donation opportunities, only about 28,000 organs are transplanted each year. As a result, 21 candidates die each day for lack of a donor.

This April, is the 12th Annual National Donate Life Month. The celebration commemorates those who have received or continue to wait for lifesaving transplants and remembers those who have given through donation. A single organ donor can save the lives of eight people, while a single tissue donor can save and heal 50 others through needed heart valves, corneas, skin, bone, and tendons that mend hearts, prevent or cure blindness, heal burns and save limbs. Continue reading.

 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Savannah’s Gift

My Daily Tribune | Dean Wright

VINTON — The birth of a child is regarded by many as the most joyous occasion to be marked in the expanse of human life.

Despite the trials of existence and the inevitability of death, many parents say that children are worth all the sacrifices in time, money and sanity when it comes to hearing their infant’s first laugh or seeing their first smile.

Savannah was no different in this case.

Savannah Lynnea McCarley was born March 5, 2010, to Kayla George, 30, and Ryan McCarley, 39, of Vinton, at Holzer Hospital in Gallipolis. She measured seven pounds, four ounces and was 22 inches long at birth. There were no complications in her birthing other than the need for a Cesarean section. Her father said Savannah needed some prompting from the doctor upon her birth to start crying.

“But once she started crying, I don’t think she quit for the first few months,” McCarley said. “Bless her heart. One of us was up every night at some point.” Continue reading.

 

Saline woman pays it forward, saves stranger's life

Detroit Free Press | By Kristen Jordan Shamus

Samantha Carlson, 29, of Saline meets Dr. Robert Forte, 64, of Farmington Hills for the first time as his physician Dr. Ankit Sakhuja looks on. (Photo: Regina H. Boone Detroit Free Press)

One good deed begets another, at least that's how Samantha Carlson saw it.

A clerical worker at Allegiance Health in Jackson, Carlson watched every day as patients came in and out for dialysis, coping with the effects of kidney failure.

"It's heartbreaking to see them," said Carlson, 29, of Saline. "I've seen people come in to get emergency dialysis that probably don't have much longer to live, that don't have the transplant option."

One night, she saw a TED Talk about the tremendous need for kidney donors — about 2,800 are on a transplant waiting list in Michigan alone.

"I did a little research on that," she said. "I didn't know that I could be an anonymous living donor. After that, I was sold. I would do it for my family or friends, why not do it for somebody else?"

Late one night, she filled out an online form to begin the process of becoming a living donor for anyone in need of a kidney who was a good match to her blood and tissue type. Continue reading

 

 

Trumbull 4-year-old needs liver; Campbell son saves dad

Vindy | William K. Alcorn

SPECIAL TO THE VINDICATOR | Jamie, 4, of Trumbull County, who has been in the custody of the county’s Children Services since a few months after birth, is in critical condition with biliary atresia in a Pittsburgh hospital, waiting for a desperately needed live liver donor.

April is National Donate Life Month, a time when local, regional and national activities occur to encourage Americans to register as organ, eye and tissue donors and to celebrate those who have saved lives or been saved through the gift of organ donation.

A number of Mahoning Valley residents are in dire need of an organ transplant to save their quality of life, if not their very lives.

Among them are Jimmy C. Riley of Campbell, who was facing dialysis because his kidneys had nearly shut down because of diabetes before a kidney, donated by a family member, gave him new life.

Jamie, 4, of Trumbull County, who has been in the custody of the county’s Children Services since a few months after birth, however, is in critical condition with biliary atresia in a Pittsburgh hospital, waiting for a desperately needed live liver donor. Continue reading.

 

Social media, family spread the word about donation

Boston Herald | Lindsay Kalter

Seeing Kevin Sullivan live on in the recipients whose lives were saved after he tragically fell to his death has given his sisters and parents new appreciation for organ donation — and they’re now working to spread the word through public speaking and social media.

The family posts updates on Kevin’s Facebook memorial page, Remembering Kevin Sullivan, sharing stories about the donor recipients and encouraging the page’s 1,461 followers to register.

“Facebook is quite the venue,” said Kevin’s younger sister, Katie. “The donor stories bring so much comfort to everyone on there.”

She added, “I’ve had so many people come up to us and say they’re an organ donor now.”

The Sullivan family attended an organ donation awareness event at Boston Children’s Hospital earlier this month to talk about their experience. They were joined by four organ recipients. Continue reading.

 

Failed match helps achieve chain of kidney donations

Roanoke Times | Travis Williams

FLOYD — Denna Harris had a plan.

Last summer, the longtime Floyd County High School secretary was scheduled to donate her kidney to her cousin, Chelsea Hodges, and make good on a promise of 13 years.

But the plan failed.

"Literally two days before we were supposed to have surgery, UVa called me and told me our final cross-match came back with my blood reacting to hers," Hodges, 22, said.

The news that Hodges’ body would likely reject the organ was devastating to Harris, she said. But that didn’t stop her commitment to give.

In March, the National Kidney Registry completed its largest ever multi-center kidney swap, transplanting 34 kidneys in 25 transplant centers across the country — and Harris was ninth in the complex chain of exchanges among strangers. Today, she’s told, her kidney is currently doing well with its new owner in Colorado.

"I just really felt like that might have been God’s plan all along," Harris said.

Plan A to Plan B

Hodges, now a senior at Liberty University, said from the time she was diagnosed with Alports syndrome, which is often characterized by kidney disease, at the age of 8 she knew she’d need a kidney at some point in her early 20s and that Harris would volunteer to donate.

"She always said if I needed a kidney, she wanted to be the one to do it," Hodges said.

When Hodges’ kidney function dropped to 15 percent in December 2013, she said she was told to start looking for donors. In keeping with her promise, Harris quickly stepped up and began the process of extensive testing to ensure the two were compatible. Continue reading