2 years after kidney donation – completely back to normal!

I just had my final post-donation check-up at Baystate. It was nostalgic to make the drive and see the offices one last time – I spent so much time there in 2020! My numbers are even better, so it’s really like I never donated, and I forget about it for weeks at a time. Joyce, the donor coordinator who guided me through the whole process, has retired, but she happened to be in the office working per-diem so I gave her another farewell hug. Nancy, the current coordinator, is another sweetheart, and she emphasized that I can reach out at any time if I have any questions or complications. But I doubt I will. Best of all, the donated kidney is still working well, and Chris says she’s only taking one anti-rejection drug, which is great!

Reference rangePre-surgeryDay after6 weeks6 months1 year2 years
Creatinine (mg/dl)0.5-
EGFR (ml/min/[height^2)> 60965056546173
Protein, urine (mg/dl)0-121616129
Micro-albumin< 2012.6< 12< 12<12
Urine creatinine (mg/dl)20-275183.5164.4144.2100.2

I had thought Hartford would be my last marathon because I was getting so slow. But when I resumed regular blood donation, I got deferred for low iron a few times in a row, and it turns out I was anemic! I’ve been vegetarian forever, but probably between age and dietary changes (no more breakfast cereal) it tipped over into a deficiency. I’ve been taking supplemental iron and B12 and my levels are normal now. I can donate blood again (maybe not as frequently – playing that by ear!), but also my running speed is back up.

I’m still a little slower than I was 5 or 10 years ago, but I won’t shut the door on another marathon. I might want to do New York again… But until then, this blog goes back into mothballs!

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