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Kidney Disease: What Were Your Symptoms?

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Sharon shares her kidney disease symptoms before starting dialysis and the treatment options she has tried.

Hi, my name is Sharon and two years ago I was diagnosed with kidney disease and I’d like to share my story.

Two years ago I was diagnosed with kidney disease. Initially I didn’t have any symptoms; at least I thought I didn’t have any symptoms. I actually didn’t feel good. I was not sleeping. Those were symptoms, and I actually felt worse than I thought I did. It wasn’t until I started dialysis that I began to feel better.

When I was sent to the doctor by my oncologist to the nephrologist to look at my kidneys and see what was going on. I think my fear came from the fact that my mother died at 36 from the same kidney disease. Her sisters all died from it. Now my mother died because they didn’t have dialysis for her. Her sisters however didn’t want dialysis and so they didn’t take it. So I always had a block that I was going to have to have it and be on it and I was afraid of it.

So I started out with the peritoneal dialysis and then I went to, that immediately got infected and I had to have the tube removed, and then I started with the regular in-center, which is three days a week for three to three and a half hours, three and a half hours I believe. It interfered with our schedule a lot, but then I went to the nocturnal program which is an eight-hour program where you spend the night there three nights a week, and with that program it worked really well.

They run it at a slower rate and they run it all night so that for the eight hours, and it makes you feel better. I mean, it’s not as harsh on your body, and I did that for ten months and then I was actually supposed to have a kidney transplant. My son was a perfect match and it was scheduled for February 18th, but when I went in on February 11th to the Mayo Clinic to have the pre-op done my white blood count was too low so they postponed it for a month.

Then when they re-checked me they decided that they could not do it because in order to treat the cancer they would have to give me the same medication, the same chemo and it would kill my kidney. My son then would be without a kidney and I would have no kidneys and be on dialysis anyway.

Then Dr. Singh, who is a doctor at Southwest Kidney, offered me this program of doing it at home, home-hemo, and so I took the training and my husband is my partner. He puts me on and takes me off the machine and we do fabulous and I feel fabulous.

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