This week I will be live in the National Kidney Registry and ready for algorithmic matching! I had my 8-tube blood draw last week. My coordinator said the West Nile virus finally came back negative and I’m 100% official even though I haven’t gotten the letter yet. I have no blackout dates for surgery so I have maximum flexibility for building a chain and since type B is on the rare side, I could get the call very soon. I was reading up on the last few years of NKR quarterly reports and the length of kidney chains has been dropping – I think because the algorithm is working so well, we just need more donors! – so I’m prepared it might only be 2 or 3 kidneys total, but that still helps, and somebody still comes off the list who wouldn’t otherwise get a live kidney. I told my boss and she was very supportive. Now I’m working on the email I’ll send family once I have a surgery date. !!!
It’s a thing to name your kidneys, as I discovered on the Facebook donor group, and I wanted to participate because I’m a sucker for that kind of thing. It took a while to come up with mine – I was leaning towards “Wheeler and Woolsey” after flirting with “Castor and Pollux,” but those were too obscure. Captain and Tennille was a last minute joking suggestion from Jonathan and I jumped on it. Then he warned me “They got divorced” but hey, mine are splitting up too! Wikipedia says they stayed friends and that Captain (Daryl Dragon) had end stage renal disease… I’ll keep him, hoping to change his outcome, and send Toni Tennille off to help someone else.
As a project while waiting for a match, I started assembling all the nicknames I could find mentioned. If yours isn’t on here, let me know!
Coordinator says “meeting went well” – I assume that means I’m in??? I think they send a real official letter but no idea how long that will take. She is getting the cryo kit shipped to her – she explained that for these tissue samples, the handling is very finicky and not something my local lab can do. Ooh, I think this is it: https://www.kidneyregistry.org/cryo-shipping.php – dry ice and everything. So I’ll see her for the draw and presumably will hear more.
I haven’t heard another peep from my coordinator but tomorrow might be the day. I have a more detailed report on the CT and I love that it says all my organs are “unremarkable.” Liver, gallbladder, pancreas, adrenal glands, stomach, bowel, mesentery (whose existence I was only vaguely aware of), bladder all unremarkable. The spleen gets to be “Normal in size and attenuation” – fancy! I do have “scattered atherosclerotic calcifications” on various vessels and arteries, which I assume isn’t too surprising at 55, although based on my bloodwork my heart disease risk is very low…