From Sharla Long:
I was diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) when I was 18 years old. Throughout the years, the doctors also diagnosed me with Polycystic Liver Disease (PLD). This wasn’t a huge surprise because it runs in my family. Not only did my father and sister have it, but my daughters do as well.
For most of my life, the function of my kidneys and liver have been normal. Around four years ago, my kidney function started declining as the cysts grew larger. My liver function is still decent, however, the cysts on it are so large that it is creating other health issues. The doctors tell me that my kidneys are each the size of a football and my liver is the size of a basketball!
I have always known that a kidney transplant would be in my future. To qualify for a transplant, your function must be below 20%. My kidneys function is at 13%. I qualify for dialysis, however I am going to put that off for as long as I can. On July 23rd, 2020 I went to visit both my nephrologist and heptalogist in Lincoln and Omaha. Both doctors were amazed at how my condition and my kidney and liver had changed. They had me see a transplant surgeon at UNMC immediately and within hours they had me scheduled for a transplant evaluation. Three weeks later, Geoff and I went to Omaha for a three day journey full of doctors, tests, and so much information. Two weeks after my evaluation, I was officially put on the transplant list for a double transplant; kidney and liver.
When we finally receive the call from UNMC, we will have 4-6 hours to arrive at the Medical Center. Our bags are packed and ready to go! After surgery, they will place me on a transplant floor for a week or so. After that, we will have to stay in Omaha for 6-8 weeks. We will be staying in a hotel or apartment near UNMC because there will be a lot appointments, tests, and doctor visits. I will need a caretaker for that time, so Geoff, my sister Lori and my daughters’ will be alternating stays with me. After we get the “go ahead” from all of my doctors, we will be headed to the comfort of our own home. Once we get home, we will still have to make the trip to Omaha to make sure my new kidneys and liver are doing their job.
Our family is very thankful for everyone’s thoughts, prayers, and the love you have shown us. We cannot thank you enough. I am eager to start feeling better and start my “new” life. God is taking us on a journey and we are ready!
Trinity Lutheran of Arapahoe, Nebraska's Thrivent group is wishing to raise funds for this member. Donations toward this cause can be made here or checks can be mailed to Trinity Lutheran Church, Arapahoe, NE 68922. If writing a check please make it out to Trinity and write in the memo 'Long' so we can discern it from general funds. Thank you for your prayers!