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Old 10-11-2011, 09:36 AM
 
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I know, what a nightmare dilemma, right? That's why I thought I'd throw the question out to the wise folks here.

The dad lives close by my friend, and has cared for his dad for years, in addition to being a single parent. The siblings are pressuring him over the phone. It is a very unfair scenario, IMO.

I told him what needs to happen is for him to offer the donation, but for someone close to him, (his 18-year-old son for example), to step in and tell the family that the guy's kids will not allow it, because they don't want to worry about his after-care or something.

It is really none of my business, but my friend asked me what I thought about it. There is no really good answer, either way you lose.
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Old 10-11-2011, 09:53 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hothulamaui View Post
your friend should find out if his kidneys are healthy enough to donate. many people have a degree of kidney disease and don't even know it.
That's an interesting point - although it seems that the kidney damage in question was caused by alcohol use/abuse....

My father had to have a kidney removed due to a tumor which pre-op he was told was almost certainly cancerous. This turned out to not be the case -although the damage to the kidney from the tumor still requiremed it's removal. Later, my father - who is adopted - met his biological brother who turned out to have also had a kidney removed due to a non-cancerous tumor. Since finding this out - I have added blood screens for kidney function to my own regular health physicals..
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Old 10-11-2011, 12:09 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Bakeneko View Post
That's an interesting point - although it seems that the kidney damage in question was caused by alcohol use/abuse....

My father had to have a kidney removed due to a tumor which pre-op he was told was almost certainly cancerous. This turned out to not be the case -although the damage to the kidney from the tumor still requiremed it's removal. Later, my father - who is adopted - met his biological brother who turned out to have also had a kidney removed due to a non-cancerous tumor. Since finding this out - I have added blood screens for kidney function to my own regular health physicals..
I had a kidney removed last year. the doc said recovery should be 6 to 8 weeks, at 12 weeks I was still in a great deal of pain. the doc said the earlier quote was for "young" people" so I put off thinking I would feel better for another few weeks. I was literally in pain, every day, 24 hours a day for 5 months. I thought something else was wrong but it was just my body recouping at 59 years old. my incision was on my chest as the doc said he could see a bit better during the operation vs the incision you can choose on your side. I wanted the doc to be able to see as well as possible. I do know other people who had the side incision and they seemed to recoup faster. not sure if the incision site had much to do with it or not, but I would say donating or losing a kidney in my experience is something I would only recommend for the young. it was difficult to say the least.

I would have the op's pal start off with a kidney function test, many people have chronic kidney disease and don't even know it. 5 stages of CKD. I would not be donating if I had any CKD at all. yes, you can live fine with one kidney but if anything were to happen to it. you are screwed. I could not ask my family for a kidney, not at this age would I want to go through the transplant surgery and recovery.

the op's friend should tell his sister who keeps pressuring him for her to donate and see what she says. if the sis won't donate then at least he can point out the hypocrisy of her stance and it might shut her up.
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Old 10-11-2011, 12:58 PM
 
Location: EPWV
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Aside from the medical testing to rule someone a match/not a match, isn't there some kind of psychological questioning to see if that person really wants to be a donor and why [examples such as possible monetary compensation]; and, to rule out being pressured into it by family/friends?
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Old 10-11-2011, 01:09 PM
 
14,184 posts, read 15,249,008 times
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Originally Posted by cat1116 View Post
Aside from the medical testing to rule someone a match/not a match, isn't there some kind of psychological questioning to see if that person really wants to be a donor and why [examples such as possible monetary compensation]; and, to rule out being pressured into it by family/friends?
great question
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Old 10-11-2011, 03:19 PM
 
Location: Brawndo-Thirst-Mutilator-Nation
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Nope, keeping my bodyparts........family or no family member.
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Old 10-11-2011, 08:41 PM
 
Location: Lake Station, IN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cat1116 View Post
Aside from the medical testing to rule someone a match/not a match, isn't there some kind of psychological questioning to see if that person really wants to be a donor and why [examples such as possible monetary compensation]; and, to rule out being pressured into it by family/friends?
The donor does have to see a psychiatrist. It's a one on one session so the donor can freely express themselves without worrying about others hearing them. The psychiatrist will completely question the donor about if they are sure they want to do it and go over all the risks with them just like the transplant team will.

OP-Your friend shouldn't let people pressure him into this even though it's his dad. This is a huge decision to make and one that only he can make. At his father's age, he should take into consideration what other health issues his father has. And I also agree with SouthernBelle about the age issue. As mean as this may sound, someone at that age is just going to develop other issues that may take out the kidneys. Dialysis sucks but it's not necessarily a death sentence. Many people survive fine for a long time on it. My husband has been going for 3 years. Some of the older people there have been on dialysis for 10-15 years now and are still doing fine. It just depends on what other health issues a person has. Tell your friend not to let anyone guilt him into doing something he isn't 100% sure of.
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Old 10-12-2011, 04:58 PM
 
Location: ATL suburb
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For this situation, no. The potential donor still has children who to some degree, depend on him. The donor is in his 50's the recipient, even older. How long will that kidney last him. Most importantly, he doesn't seem to want to donate. No one should be pressured into doing something that could be a life changing event for the donor, recipient, and donor's family.

If my mother were still alive and needed a kidney, I'd sadly have to say no.
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Old 10-12-2011, 05:08 PM
 
Location: zone 5
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I agree he shouldn't do it, due to his father's age and the fact he has dependent children. It seems like when a parent is seriously ill, adult children always find something to argue about. I wonder, if they were good candidates for donating a kidney, if they'd be so eager.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:53 PM
 
Location: Tucson for awhile longer
8,874 posts, read 14,049,864 times
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Here's another thing to consider. You say the potential donor is the one currently providing support for the father -- not the siblings who live far away. Then perhaps he should pose this to them: "Here's the deal. I give Dad a kidney and then he goes to live with one of you because it will be a long time before I'm healthy enough to care for him AND my kids."

I'll bet they change their tune about Dad's need for surgery. And if they don't, then it will make the situation a little more palatable for the donor.

Siblings who aren't in the picture have no idea how hard being a support system to an unhealthy and/or elderly parent is. They think EVERYTHING should be done for their parent -- as long as they aren't the ones doing it. Add major surgery -- AND potential future health concerns to the donor -- to the picture and we're looking an an extremely unbalanced family dynamic.

To me, a lot would depend on the father's history of alcohol abuse. If it happened over a long period of time, he might have other health issues that would make a total and complete recovery of a 70-year-old unlikely. If he's still compromising his health in any way -- drinking, smoking, bad eating, no exercise -- that would be all the more reason to say no since he's not going to live much beyond this. Here's one thing I've found out first-hand in dealing with my elderly parents' many doctors. Surgeons often only look at the success/failure rate of the operation they are going to do. They don't always take into consideration the big picture of how their activities will impact every other aspect of even the patient's well-being, let alone the rest of his family.

If I were the fellow in question, I'd schedule a series of meetings with a therapist, be brutally honest about all the circumstances, and if the therapist agrees that this donation is not a good idea for the donor, I'd just tell the siblings the psychiatrist rejected me.
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