We appreciate your interest in learning more about how you can help people in need as a living kidney donor.
This selection of videos introduces you to the benefits and risks of being a living donor and the reality of how a transplant affects patients.
Three years into his marriage to Kathleen, Craig Hostert was diagnosed with an autoimmune kidney disease. In 1998, two and a half years into dialysis, Kathleen donated a kidney to Craig and gave him a second chance at life. After a successful transplant surgery, the Hosterts became ambassadors in the transplant community and founded the successful Donate Life Run/Walk. When Craig’s kidneys failed again 14 years later, his son Justin stepped in to give his father another kidney and the gift of life. This is the story about a family with an extraordinary bond.
Patty & Richard (known to his friends and family as Frog) may be cousins, but they weren’t really close growing up. Then, one day, Frog got an email from his uncle, Patty’s father. It was sent to the whole family and it said Patty’s kidneys were failing and she would need a transplant. He wasn’t asking for anyone to step up to be her donor, he was just updating the family on her health. Frog didn’t give it a second thought. He responded to his uncle, saying if he was a match, he would be her donor. It turns out, for first cousins, they were a very good match. Patty and Frog are now much closer than when they were kids. They’re not just cousins, they’re kidney cousins!
Altruistic living kidney donor, Max Zapata of Clovis is a man on a mission: to spread the word about living kidney donation. He says, “It was God placing something in my heart.” Max’s donation started a chain of 10 kidney transplants. His kidney went to a young woman, Laura Amador, a student at USC.
Lorena Rodriguez of San Diego wanted to be an altruistic living kidney donor to free a complete stranger from dialysis. But first, she had to make some changes in her own health and lifestyle. So, over a two-year period, she exercised and dieted to lose 50 pounds and lower her blood pressure. Once her health improved, she was cleared to donate. In doing so, she freed not just one person from dialysis but three because her donation started a kidney chain that resulted in three transplants. A young woman named Monique McCray, also of San Diego, got Lorena’s kidney. The two had not met before surgery, but were introduced shortly afterward. The women are now good friends and travel buddies!
LaKishia White of Fresno and Jessica Jurado of Sacramento are not the kind of women that are going to let the phrase “incompatible” stand in their way. LaKishia wanted to donate to her husband, JePahl, but the two weren’t a match. Jessica wanted to donate to her mother, but they weren’t a match either. LaKishia and Jessica then heard about something called a Paired Exchange Program, where they could be part of a kidney chain involving an altruistic living kidney donor and a series of mismatched pairs like theirs. The result? Jessica’s kidney went to JePahl and in return Jessica’s mother got a kidney from a Santa Barbara woman. LaKishia’s kidney went to someone in Pennsylvania.
Tad Suwa is a Sacramento firefighter who wants nothing more than to be the man his family needs, which includes being a firefighter/medic. Instead, he’s confined to a desk because of end stage renal disease. For now, he undergoes nightly dialysis treatments, but he’s hoping for a kidney transplant. Dialysis interferes with time he could be spending with his family, fishing and serving his community as a firefighter. A transplant would free him and his family to live their lives again.
The Chain is an innovative, digital short‐form documentary that uses five interwoven story lines to provide a compelling portrait of organ donation in the United States.
Maggie Ervin, a living donor at California Pacific Medical Center, is a remarkable woman. She decided to donate one of her kidneys to help a complete stranger, simply because she thought it was the right thing to do. Maggie’s gift did more than help save the life of one person, it started a chain reaction that helped at least three people get a new kidney and a second chance at life.
Kidney Transplant Chain
Two altruistic donors launch rare kidney transplant chains at UCLA.
Risks to Living Donors
The Explore Transplant program focuses on the risks for someone who chooses to donate a kidney to another person.
Katie Couric has an inside look at a kidney exchange in which 20 people bound by selflessness and “The America Spirit” helped save 10 lives. Featuring Jan and Garet Hil of the National Kidney Registry and Max Zapata of Clovis, Calif.
To view this video, go to http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/kidney-chains-link-strangers/