Transplant Stories

Coreen Walstra

By 2020-07-15 Aug 11th, 2020 No Comments

We’re featuring 30 year old Coreen Walstra from Boksburg in today’s #WaitingWednesday post.

1. When were you diagnosed with organ failure and which organ are you waiting for?
I was diagnosed with Auto Immune Hepatitis in 1990, just after I turned 1 year old. I’ve had hepatic liver failure my whole life, and I’m on the waiting list for a liver transplant.

2. How does your current health affect your lifestyle?
It doesn’t affect my lifestyle too much. I’ve lived with it for so long that I don’t really know otherwise. I do get tired quite easily and struggle to fight the normal cold and flu quickly, but I’m still able to work, go to gym, spend time with friends and family.

3. How long have you been on the waiting list?
I’ve been on the waiting list since September 2019.

4. What are you most excited for after your transplant?
Being able to really get through a day and not feel drained. To be able to run around more and be more active with my work and spending time with my little cousins. And the possibility of having my own children, and getting more tattoos! (lol)

5. Why do you think there is a shortage of donors in South Africa?
Many people are not aware of one being able to donate their organs, and how many people’s lives they can save. Religion also plays a role in being an organ donor, some religions and beliefs don’t allow for people to be an organ donor.

6. What is the biggest stigma / myth you have heard about organ donation?
You can take on personality traits from the organ donor, depending on the organ people assume one has to be dead to be a donor – I also only recently learnt that for a liver transplant, you can have a live donor.