This is my family. That's me with the long hair. My beautiful Doghter, Brittany, who is an English Setter. My most handsome Dogson, Peanut Butter, Yorkshire Terrier. And my amazing, wonderful husband, BJ is the dude without ANY hair. He is a Marine Veteran, Marathoner, Triathlete....the picture of health.
My husband was just diagnosed with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), the most common form of polycystic kidney disease (PKD).
In ADPKD, fluid-filled cysts develop and enlarge in both kidneys, eventually leading to kidney failure. It is the fourth leading cause of kidney failure and more than 50 percent of people with ADPKD will develop kidney failure by age 50. Once a person has kidney failure, dialysis or a transplant are the only options.
ADPKD is a painful disease that impacts quality of life. The average size of a typical kidney is a human fist. Polycystic kidneys can get much larger, some growing as large as a football, and weighing up to 30 pounds each.
Unlike some genetic diseases, ADPKD does not skip a generation meaning it often affects many people in one family. This is the case with my family. BJ's father lived with his diseased kidneys for many years on dialysis. His kidneys became so necrosed that it necessitated there complete removal. Today, He lives with no kidneys completely reliant on dialysis. Just this week, his brother Jeff was also diagnosed with ADPKD.
What happens now? We raise funds, awareness and hope that we get new kidneys or that science makes significant leaps. Right now they are testing artificial kidneys and it might just make donation a thing of the past!
I’m challenging myself on and off the course to help raise funds to support the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) and the work they do to help the 73 million Americans at risk for kidney disease, the 26 million Americans living with chronic kidney disease, and those who care for and about them.
NKF is leading the pace group in the fight against kidney disease and I am excited to join the pack! Will you join us by making a donation or challenging yourself too?
Every dollar counts, and I would be grateful for your support to help fight kidney disease! To learn more about BJ and Jeff's specific kidney disease visit www.pkdcure.org