Kidney transplant recipient fights organ rejection


Contributed photo:   Emily Yang of Irrigon is all smiles after undergoing a recent kidney transplant. A fundraiser to help with medical expenses is planned Friday at Hermiston Brewing Company/Nookies Restaurant in Hermiston.

Medical bills and expenses are piling up for an Irrigon woman who recently had a kidney transplant.

Emily Yang, 22, who was diagnosed with lupus when she was 9, has had multiple surgeries over the years — including a prior kidney transplant when she was 11. Her body rejected that organ a couple of years later and Yang has been on dialysis for many years.

Lupus is an autoimmune disease, which means that the immune system mistakes the body’s own tissues as foreign invaders and attacks them. It results in inflammation and can lead to damage of tissues and organs.

Calling it a “precious gift,” Yang underwent surgery for the recent kidney transplant May 20. Appreciating the simple things in life most people take for granted, Yang is excited about what the new organ means for her. 

“From the moment I woke up from surgery, all I can do was just sing, ‘I can pee, I can pee now yay!’ The kidney had started doing its work right away,” she wrote in an email. Continue reading
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