Members Share Their Stories
Personal stories from members help to give an insight into their experiences, we always welcome members to write in with their story. We have three stories to share Stuart Rushton, Madhu Madhani, and a member of the medical team Coral Wimbury.
My Renal Journey by Stuart Rushton
The very first time I came into contact with nephrology wasin outpatient 3 at LGH I was referred by urology consultant Mr Osborne to see the late Prof Walls, I actually saw the now Professor Feehally who told me that my kidneys had been damaged due to childhood urinary problems and eventually they would fail, which eventually they did in 1992. I was admitted to ward 15 which then housed mixed male and female patients in three nephrology bays but before you reached the main ward area you had to walk along the passage way which housed side rooms where inpatients received haemodialysis, once you reached the main ward you had transplant to your right and nephrology to your left. Once I had been admitted it was soon clear I had kidney failure and soon found myself having a catheter inserted into my shoulder and put onto a dialysis machine which would happen several
times during my 5 week stay in hospital, during this time the doctors and nursing staff explained about CAP which I decided was my treatment of choice thus had a PD catheter
fitted into my stomach. Upon discharge it was arranged for me to attend a daily training on how to perform CAPD at home. I ended up doing this for 2 years very successfully occasionally needing admission to sort out different issues,overall I got on well with CAPD and even went on holiday once to the Isle of Wight. However at the end of the holiday I got an infection which the local GP who was called to see me at the hotel thought maybe peritonitis and arranged my transportation to Portsmouth renal unit, who later discharged me with antibiotics so I could travel home, that was a long journey.
On returning home I was admitted to Ward 15 who treated the infection over a several week stay. Then in summer 1994 the call I hadbeen waiting for came a kidney was available for transplant and I might be a suitable match which I indeed ended up being. Professor Nicholson went on to perform the operation in the early hours of the morning. The kidney took several weeks to work and I was discharged continuing CAPD, then one night I couldn’t stop having to get up to urinate something I hadn’t been able to do for 2 years. My new kidney had begun to work and continued to do so for 16 years with only a few problems along the way which were easily treated. Then I attended transplant clinic one Monday and I had begun to loose protein in my urine, this however was sorted out but then as the months went on my creatinine started to rise it was arranged for me to have a ultrasound and later a biopsy which showed that the kidney had indeed begun to fail and there wasn’t an awful lot to be done about for the doctors to give me medication which hopefully slow the progression of loss of function down but the inevitable was that I would need at some point dialysis again so after a lot of thought I decided haemodialysis was my preference so 2 operations were arranged to create a branchial fistula. This was done and I continued for some time before it was needed in which time I attended a pre-dialysis educational
course which was very helpful and worth doing even though a lot of stuff I already knew about. Then at the start of 2012 my health clearly begun to deteriorate and after many meeting in transplant clinic with Dr Topham.
We decided the point had come to start haemodialysis and I wasadded to the list of people requiring a dialysis slot, my GFR was about 14% at this time and following a 6 week period I went for my blood test prior to transplant clinic on the Monday however I got a call from Dr Carr saying my GFR was not 10 and the urgency to be located a haemodialysis slot had escalated, which it was at Corby. I attended there a couple of times then a place at Hamilton was available which I accepted and I have been having my dialysis there ever since. During this time I have been reviewed by the transplant team and they are happy for me to be transplanted again at some point in the not to
distant future. When that will happennobody on the list knows and we all hope the call comes soon.
A KIDNEY PATIENT’S TRANSPLANT STORY BY MADHU MADHANI
I was diagnosed in late 80’s – early 90’s when I was told that my kidneys were not functioning as well as they should. After which I had a biopsy to establish the cause and was then placed on various medications and was monitored at the clinic. They helped to prepare me for eventually having to go on dialysis and adjust my life style accordingly when, and out of the blue, I had a call from Ward 17 to say that there was a kidney available for transplant.
I rushed to the ward and after the results of tests, I was informed that the transplant would go ahead and was all prepared for me to undergo the procedure the following day. My wife informs me that I did not come back to the ward until 12 hours or so after I went down and that she was then constantly at my bedside.
The surgeons and the supporting medical team and the whole Ward 17 nursing team have been extremely supportive during my recuperation. The efforts of the surgeons and the medical staff and the nursing staff in ensuring all patients recover quickly and are looked after is, in my opinion, of the very best and deserves appropriate recognition. Also – I should not forget the domestic team and the pharmacy team.
I would encourage one and all to carry a donor card and I can tell all of you that, without me having a kidney transplant, my whole life would have been completely different. When I was discharged from the ward, I was advised to follow a diet regime and I believe at best of times, I did. Here also I must say that my wife and my daughters also contributed to the effort by giving up food/drink items which I could not eat and I sincerely believe that this sacrifice of theirs helped me a long way to ensure that I avoided the temptations of having to indulge in any items not listed on the diet sheet.
During my recovery stage and ultimate return to work, my wife, my daughters, my friends and my work colleagues have been extremely supportive, without their respective contributions and sacrifices, I believe I would not have recovered so well and in such quick time. My work colleagues and management team have provided me the best of support and even now they ensure that my workload is relatively stress-free. A huge thank you to one and all from the bottom of my heart.
What I would like to emphasise to all transplant patients is that the pain is worth going through the process and the best way for a quick recovery is to follow the medical guidance and, most importantly, ensure you take all your medications without fail. The Ward 17 team is extremely helpful and you can contact them 24/7 and they will deal with your concerns without fail.
There is also a team at Leicestershire Kidney Patients Association (LKPA), a registered charity entirely run by kidney patients for the kidney patients covering patients in and around Midlands area and other affiliated areas. All kidney patients registered at Leicester General Hospital are automatically deemed as members of the LKPA. Margaret Ince, the Chair, Ann Carter, the Secretary and yours truly as Treasurer can provide you guidance in any matters arising and also we have active members Bharat Patel, for example, who you can rely upon to advise you on any aspects that may concern all kidney patients. Being on dialysis is not a taboo and you can still maintain quality of life.
MEET THE MEDICAL TEAM – CORAL WIMBURY
My name is Coral Wimbury, I am the senior sister on the Haemodialysis unit at LGH. I have been in this post for just over 2 years now and have thoroughly enjoyed the challenge. After originally training in London I worked on a busy medical ward with 5 renal beds I was then “hooked” on renal nursing. I met my husband Kim while attempting to become a parachutist at Sibson (near Peterborough) and moved here to be with him. I started working on ward 15 in 1984 and apart from a short 6 month break in 1986, have been working both on the wards and on the dialysis unit ever since. One of my proudest moments in nursing, was passing the nurse prescribing course recently. I have 2 sons of whom I am very proud. Our eldest (David) is at university in Bristol and his younger brother (Michael) is at Loughborough. I am still attempting to play field hockey at the weekends. This amuses some of the patients when they see me limping around the unit on a Monday morning aching and bruised. I have never lost my enthusiasm for working here; I have a great team of nurses and hope that I still have a few more years to continue to strive towards excellent care and a forward thinking progressive unit, which will provide the care that our patients deserve