I have IGA Nephropathy, I’m on dialysis and need a kidney transplant. I’m 34 years old. Ask me anything!
My name is Corina and I love boxing, traveling, cooking, my husband Bob and our dog, Ernie. I’ve lived in Philly for almost two decades after moving to the US from Venezuela. It’s been a good life and only in recent years have things changed drastically on my end.
In 2011, I came down with an awful sinus infection. That’s all I thought it was. The doctors couldn’t figure out why my blood pressure was through the roof or what was going on. Turns out, I had something called IGA nephropathy. I was 27 years old.
Being diagnosed with chronic kidney disease—that rapidly progressed—wasn’t a life sentence for me. I refused to let it hold me back or get me down. I found ways to stay active, to stay positive, and to stay… myself. I didn’t want to lose a sense of myself through this diagnosis. The specialists said it could take 20 years until my kidneys would stop working. It only took 5.
My name is Corina, and I used to love boxing. I used to love traveling. I used to have more energy for everyday things. My husband Bob and our dog Ernie make every day a little bit easier, when I can stay awake long enough to spend time with them. Doing anything in Philly—no matter the season—is exhausting. Walking is exhausting. Talking is exhausting. Putting all of this on paper is exhausting… and terrifying, yet here I am.
My name is Corina, I’m 34 years old, and I need a new kidney.
My blood type is O (as in S.O.S. or O.M.G. or “O, wow that’s the universal donor blood type, so O donors are in high demand”) so that’s where things get a little trickier.
Right now, my life isn’t the same as it used to be, and I don’t feel the same, either. But I’m still me. Still Corina. And I’m still hopeful. And I’m still patient. And a patient, too—here at Jefferson University Hospital in Philly, in case you’re local to the area.
I am truly shocked by the amount of responses I have gotten so far. Not only am I hearing from people with the same disease as mine but also people who know someone that has it and is curious to learn more. This is truly amazing!
Not only are people just generally sending positive vibes, but they're offering to get tested to donate also. I'm incredibly grateful. If you asked me to send you a donor form in the comments, could you please email me at [[email protected]]([email protected]). It's getting hard to keep track of everyone on here! (which I guess is not a bad thing!)
To all of you with IGA Nephropathy, kidney disease or other chronic illness, I'm happy to have helped you in any way, however small. And it makes me feel a little less alone hearing a lot of you who've gone through the same and have come out the other side feeling better!
Lastly, I will try my hardest to reply to every single one of your questions. I do need to get back to work today though! So I will chip away at this every night this week.
I think I was able to get to all of your questions and comments tonight!
Again, thanks to everyone for your questions, words of support and over all positivity. I saw some really great questions and interactions, and as a newbie on Reddit it was nice to see such a huge community of people ask and answer so many questions related to IgaN, kidney disease, transplant and other chronic illness.
To all of you who offered to help. You are amazing humans. I cannot believe how many people are willing to help a stranger. I am shocked and incredibly grateful.