We feature Sammy Nandlall from Alberton in today’s #WaitingWednesday post.
1. When were you diagnosed with organ failure and which organ are you waiting for?
15 years ago, I was diagnosed with glomerulonephritis which effected both my kidneys.
I am awaiting kidney transplant.
2. How does your current health affect your lifestyle?
At first dialysis had a major impact on my health, mentally, physically. It was a complete lifestyle changing experience for me. Dietary and fluid restrictions had to be made. Nausea, Weight Loss., Insomnia, Fatigue, Hair Loss, Cramps and Weakness of my Joints/Muscles, Low Iron levels in and out of hospital for blood transfusion, where some of the challenges I experienced. Seeing my husband and daughter enduring the emotional turmoil, and the impact that it had on us as a family. In stride they both took over all tasks at hand and never left my side. The immense love and support from my husband and daughter have given me the will to live and never give up.
Hooked on a dialysis machine for four hours can be daunting. After having my treatment thereafter going back to work and working the additional 4 -5 hours spent at dialysis each time. The deforming Scars on my arms creates a constant stare and questions constantly asked. Wearing long sleeves to cover up my scar hoping that this nightmare ends soon. Planning a vacation is daunting and very stressful. Everything revolves around my dialysis sessions. Dialysis can be tough sometimes – it’s not all that bad, but sometimes it’s not great. I am grateful though to dialysis that has given me a second chance in life.
3. How long have you been on the waiting list?
A year – Being on the transplant list feels surreal. Waiting for your phone to ring – hoping to get that call I have an Organ Donor Match for You.
4. Have you had a transplant before?
5. What are you most excited for after your transplant?
Better Quality of life. No more dialysis. Having loads more energy and, for once in my life I won’t be tired. No restriction on fluid intake. Most of all the FREEDDOM To Just Being Me…. Wow just the thought to be able to Urinate Again.
6. Why do you think there is a shortage of donors in South Africa?
Various factors impact the shortage of organ donations. The fear of the unknown. Superstition. Binded by religious beliefs. Why should I donate if I don’t benefit or get paid for my organs? Often Lack of public Awareness and Educating communities on the importance of Organ Donation. Many people are unaware or have never heard about Organ Donation. Focus on Advertising on Billboards, Radio Stations, Newspapers, Talk Shows and on Television, highlighting the Importance of Organ Donation. The focus on awareness should not be done once a year on World Organ Day. Often people would want to receive an organ but are unwilling to donate or register as an organ donor.
7. What is the biggest stigma / myth you have heard about organ donation?
On Living Donor Organ Donation: I am unable to have children. If I register As an Organ Donor, I am afraid they would come after me to harvest my organs. My family will disown me. First preference on the waiting list for an organ donation is given to one based on social and financial status.