I am raising money to help support my husband Ben, and us as his family, while he undergoes a kidney transplant in the very near future.
Ben was diagnosed with IGA Nephritis, a disease that affects Kidney Function, when he was 15 years old. With medication, he has led a normal life until June this year; just after we found out we were expecting our second child, his health declined dramatically. Doctors told us Ben, at 33 year old was in "˜end stage renal failure' and we were losing him.
This was something we always knew was going to happen, but never anticipated it would happen so soon. Ben was immediately given surgery to place a fistula in his forearm to prepare vascular access for dialysis. This involves surgeons connecting an artery to a vein which causes more blood to flow into the vein. As a result, the vein grows larger and stronger, making repeated needle insertions for dialysis treatments easier.
The fistula would need at least 6 weeks to heal before it could be used, during this time Ben was extremely unwell, his blood pressure sky rocketed and he was very weak, unable to function as a husband, father and hard working electrician to support his family. His kidneys where functioning at less than 10%. Whilst we were nervous about Ben commencing dialysis it was better than the alternative, as Ben's body was slowly shutting down and we had to accept the fact that without dialysis Ben wouldn\'t be with us much longer.
Even before the fistula had completely healed the medical professionals made the decision to start dialysis as Ben was slipping away from us. Ben commenced dialysis in July 2011 and we saw an immediate improvement in his health and he was able to return to part time work after 4 weeks of treatment.
We are all adjusting to life on dialysis. Ben manages to work a full-time job to support his family, myself (Bec) his wife of 5 years, Riley who turned 5 in April, and started full time school this year and Sasha who enlightened our lives arriving just 5 weeks ago, whilst fitting in dialysis for 5 hours 3 times a week. It's challenging for us as a family but we are very thankful that Ben is still with us and dialysis enables him to survive while he awaits a kidney transplant.
After various tests Ben has now been placed on the list for a kidney transplant due to the fact that he is fortunately otherwise healthy, is of a young age and has the most common blood group. Therefore the "˜Transplant Doctors' have advised that he should have a new Kidney and be free from dialysis in as little as 6 months!!
Once the much anticipated call comes to say that there is a kidney available for Ben he will have to leave our home in Cairns, within 5 hours, and travel to Brisbane. I will not be able to join Ben as I will need to stay in Cairns to care for our children. Ben's Nan will join him in Brisbane from Tasmania and stay with him for the duration of his stay. Ben will undergo the transplant at the Prince Alfred Hospital and remain in hospital for a week or so following the surgery, he will then have to find suitable accommodation close to the hospital and remain there for up to three months, whilst making daily visits to the hospital for tests and monitoring to ensure his body does not reject the kidney and he is recovering well. We hope to raise enough money to cover Ben's cost of living whilst in Brisbane, his medication and his obvious loss of income until he is well enough to return to Cairns and eventually to full time employment as an Electrician to support his family.
Any donation you and your family and friends can give to help Ben is his journey would be greatly appreciated by Ben, Riley Sasha and I....................every little bit will help!
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