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Editorial: Fall River woman looking for kidney to save her life

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A Fall River woman is desperately looking for a kidney to save her life. This is her story in her own words.

My name is Cheryl Lynn Doucet. I am a 59-1/2-year-old single female living in Fall River, MA

I am actively and urgently seeking an amazing person to be my kidney donor.

Up until this point in my life, I was a healthy and vibrant retail store manager working days, nights, weekends and yes … Holidays. It wasn’t uncommon to work 14-hour days, sometimes 3-4 days per week and I loved my line of work. That needed to change when my Brother was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver, brought on by long term medications. I left the world of Management after a 35-year successful career to be closer to home to help care for my Brother. I accepted a position as a full-time sales associate helping customers choose products for both kitchen and bathroom fixtures. For the next 4 years my Brother and I became a powerful team and doubled his earlier prognosis of 2 years.

After his passing in December 2017, I put my home on the market looking for a fresh start and by mid-September, 2018, I moved into my new home. By the middle of October, I felt tired all the time but attributed it to the whirlwind events of the past few months. On Sunday October 28th I drove myself to the Hospital which is where I remained for the next 2 weeks.

My diagnosis is a rare Auto-immune disease known as Anti-GBM or Good Pastor Disease. So rare in fact that it affects 1-2 people per million. And in the blink of an eye, I was receiving hemodialysis 4 hours per day and 3 times per week. I spent one week at Mass General under the care of Dr. John Niles, a world-renowned specialist of this disease. Despite all attempts, my kidneys had failed and my status escalated to stage 5 – “end-stage renal failure”.

Hemodialysis proved to be very taxing on my heart so I have recently switched to dialysis at home. My machine aptly named “Hope” runs for 9 hours every day of the week and exchanges fluids, the equivalent of (6) – 2-liter bottles. My only hope at this point is a kidney transplant and I am very grateful to have been chosen for the transplant list at Mass General Hospital (MGH).

FACT: A living donor offers the best chance for survival. There are numerous advantages of receiving a kidney from a living donor rather than one from a deceased donor. For instance, a living-donor kidney is nearly always healthier, and generally lasts about 20 years, as opposed to 10 years for a kidney from a deceased donor. The average wait time can be as long as 8-10 years. FACT: You do NOT need to be a perfect match to donate. FACT: We are born with an extra kidney. Studies show that donors live a normal, healthy life with only one kidney and are no more likely to suffer kidney failure. FACT: And the reward is very powerful. Besides the temporary sainthood, you get a tangible reminder (in the form of a small scar) that we humans come equipped with the means to affect the lives of those we love in so many ways.

Read more: https://www.livingkidneydonorsearch.com/donors-stories/jim-sollisch-living-donor-/

Organ donors need to be in good health, without high blood pressure, kidney, heart, liver or other major health issues. For more details on donor qualifications go to: http://www.lkdn.org/who_can_be_living_donor.html

What are the “rippling effects”?: https://youtu.be/nhht9kslq04

If you would like to learn more about the donation process please visit: www.MGHLivingDonors.org

Thank you for taking the time to read my story. If you are unable to donate but would like to help, please share this with friends, family, and co-workers.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Terry M. Morris

    June 13, 2019 at 4:18 pm

    I would like to help this young lady find a kidney! I would like to be tested! Just not sure how to go about it!

    • fallriverreporter

      June 13, 2019 at 4:30 pm

      There is a link in the article on what to do.

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