The Journey


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Our Story

In 1999, I was diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease. I have been managing the disease through healthy eating. Keep in mind that I can only be defeated by this disease in one or two ways—death or a kidney transplant. Moreover, death is not an option. Your friend had open heart surgery in 2009. He had two surgery’s’ in one day. The first surgery was aortic valve replacement. The second surgery was to resuscitate me because I had died. My surgeon had to repair a leaky button that was attached to my new aorta and valve. Since this significant surgery, I have not had any cardiac issues. I can maintain the same lifestyle that I had before the surgery.

I am on Warfarin. This medication has many adverse side effects. I need to be careful about enjoying life. I had been under medical care every quarter until 2014. In 2014 I went into the hospital for a routine colonoscopy. Because I have a mechanical valve, any routine outpatient procedures are now a two or three-day hospital stay for me. Before the examination, I contacted all of my physicians regarding the medicine that the hospital was going to give me. All of my physicians said that the medications should not have any adverse effects on my kidneys. However, my body must not have agreed with the drug. After the procedure, they completed some additional blood work and found that my kidney function had dropped considerably. This was the beginning of a new chapter in my life. My heart is in excellent condition. However, now my kidneys are failing. Since this procedure, I qualify to be placed on The Temple transplant list. The transplant team informed me that I was the first candidate to make The Temple Transplant list in under two weeks. I am not sure if that was an accomplishment.

 I am just proactive in managing my medical care. Moreover, I have a great team of professionals that has allowed me to participate in my health care.

 So, what is Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)? This disease causes multiple cysts to grow within the kidney. Each cyst is filled with fluid. If too many cysts grow, the kidneys become damaged. Eventually, the cysts replace the kidneys, which can lead to kidney failure. Based on my research, 600,000 people have PKD. PKD is the fourth most significant cause of kidney failure and causes 5% of all kidney failure. It is an inherited disorder. Generally, 50% of those patients who have been diagnosed with PKD will also have kidney failure by age 60. At the time when this occurred, I was 49 years old.

 Some of the symptoms of PKD are lower back pain, high blood pressure, enlarged abdomen, possible issues with a heart valve & chest pain (repaired) and many other symptoms. Please keep in mind that I am not a physician. This information is based upon my own experience and multiple resources I have found on the internet.

Moreover, yes, I have experienced all of these symptoms during this process. This disease has taken the lives of three of my family members: Edward Wright died at age 52, Joanne Cuffee at age 59 and Benjamin P Wright, Sr. my father, at age 62. Let’s be realistic. Medicine has come a long way. Edward passed first. Benjamin, Sr. passed second.

Moreover, Joanne has recently died because of kidney failure. All of these relatives were on hemodialysis until they passed. Currently, I am aware of at least five of my cousins who are managing this PKD. Moreover, they are at various stages of the disease. So, it is just a matter of time.

God decided that April 4, 2019, would be my day to receive my Kidney Transplant. A young lady that was 30 years old had a heart attack and a stroke, and God gave her angels wings after the Doctors delivered her baby.  Her family directed the kidney to me. She was on the organ donor list. By the grace of God, she was a perfect “O” Positive.  I don’t believe that God would bring me through 18 plus years of regular medical follow-up and open heart surgery and being on four transplant list from North Jersey to Jacksonville Florida to die because I could not find a kidney donor. Death or living on dialysis is not a lifetime option.  I shared this information with you. Because I might be to help others in locating a kidney donor, please feel free to call me at 888-299-2200 if you need some assistance.

My Friend who has received a Kidney

  1. Purnell Wright, Jr.


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