Thursday, August 30, 2007

Doctor's Visit - 08/28/2007

I had my regular follow-up clinic visit on Tuesday. The doctor said that I was doing well, and that my lab reports all looked good. My creatinine remains at 1.0. My magnesium is up from 1.1 to 1.6. A normal magnesium is 1.7 to 2.1, so I guess that is good. The rest of my numbers looked about like I have expected them to. My White Blood Cell count is at 7.3, which is always nice.

The doctor said my bone density test was similar to the first one they gave me. I scored exactly the same on my lumbar region (spine). I actually got a slightly higher score on my hip bone, which I guess is good. That means that my exercise and calcium supplements have been working. Speaking of exercise, I got back to doing that this week. I got my ID badge at worked coded so that I could use the fitness facility we own. It's about 15 minutes away from work, so I'll try to go there two to three times a week and get some walking done.

I talked to the actual doctor about the Glofil problem that I mentioned last time in the blog. My score has gone down about 10 points since the first test after the transplant. The doctor said she didn't know what exactly was wrong, or if it was even a problem. She asked me to do a 24-hour urine test to make sure my clearance was still good.

I'll have to see how I am doing the next time I go in. But, the doctor doesn't seem worried. She didn't need me to come back for eight more weeks.

See you all later! Enjoy your Labor Day weekend. I know I will. My mom is coming in town to see the new house. Should be loads of fun.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Bone Density Scan - Results

Here are the results from my Bone Density Scan (taken back on August 6).

This was the worse of the two results (taken from my hip bone). Though I do not know exactly what this means, there is a small chart that gives me a usable amount of information.

The small circle in that chart shows that I am at "Increased Fracture Risk." The WHO (in 1994) classified this as Osteopenia.

So, I think these are pretty similar to the results that I got back in January. If there is greater demand for more information, then I can try to find out more from the doctor when I see him next week.

So, that's it for today. Please pray that my bones don't get worse in the next six months. I am going to get back to doing regular exercise to try and keep my bones in good shape. Thanks!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

September 2007 PKD Walk

Greetings everyone!

I got a message from my aunt this week (she lives in New Mexico). Here is the letter that she is sending to all of her friends:

A message from Beverly Laude

Dear Friends and Family,

Most of you know that my nephew, Nathan, has Polycystic Kidney Disease and received a kidney transplant in January 2007. Now, he is leading a (mostly) normal life, no longer dependent on dialysis to live. My niece, Angela, also has PKD, but so far is not facing as many devasting medical problems as Nathan.

I am participating in the Walk for PKD. I've set a challenging goal to raise mondy to fund research to find a cure for PKD! With your help, we can make a real difference, together.

Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) is one of the most common life-threatening genetic diseases, affecting 600,000 Americans and 12.5 million people worldwide. In fact, it affects more people than cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, sickle cell anemia, hemophilia, Down syndrome and Huntington's disease--combined! Still, few people know about it. There is no treatment and no cure... Yet. I am walking to change that.

You can make a secure donation online by simply clicking the link at the bottom of this message. Whatever you can give will make an impact - no donation is too small! I truly appreciate your support and will keep you posted on my progress.

Thank you for helping me help find a cure for PKD!
Click here to visit my personal page.
If the text above does not appear as a clickable link, you can visit the web address:

She is going to walk in the 2007 PKD walk. If you would like to help in the fight to find a cure for Polycystic Kidney disease, please visit the link above and donate some money to help find a cure. You may not know me or anyone else with Polycystic Kidney Disease, but this could be your chance to help find a cure to the most prevalent genetic disease in our world today.

Please take a minute to visit her link and donate, if you feel so led. Thanks for taking the time out of your schedule for this message (and hopefully, become a sponsor).

Enjoy your day!!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Question Received Via E-Mail

I got an e-mail on Saturday asking me a question. I will reproduce the e-mail here (minus any personal information) and attempt to provide the best answer that I can.

DATE: AUGUST 4, 2007 at 5:42PM

Hi Nathan...

I'm writing in search of some better answers than what we are getting. My good friend is 34, male, and has PKD ( he was diagnosed about 3 years ago). We have yet to find any good help. His urine has been bloody for a week, after not being able to get into a doctor he went to the emergency room at a local hospital. After some testing and a CAT scan they said he has kidney stones and sent him on his way. Still unable to get into a specialist and still bleeding... I'm trying to be supportive and came across your site in my online searching for answers. Any advice or directions you could point me in for more answers/research would be much appreciated. I'm sure you are a busy man, but I thought I'd reach out. Your blog is great I thank you for sharing your experience!

Thank you for you time

Well, I can tell you right off that I have had several kidney stones in my life. The first one was back around 1998 or so, while I was in college. Several of my kidney stones came with blood in my urine, which is never a good thing to see. If the hospital sent him home after seeing kidney stones on a CT scan, then it probably means that the stones are small enough to pass on their own. Now, having said that, the "passing" is not that easy. My first suggestion would be to see if he could get a doctor to prescribe him some pain medication that is a bit stronger than the over-the-counter stuff. I've had kidney stones that lasted anywhere from a day to a week, but usually on the shorter end, once I started feeling the severe pain. I would notice the blood in the urine for several days before having any pain (if it was a kidney stone). If you find that your friend has not passed the stone within a day or two, he should head back to the hospital to complain again, letting them know how long the pain has been going on. If he is not in terrible pain, then the only thing to do is to wait.

As long as his kidney function is still strong, the only other thing to do is to drink a lot of water. That is the only way the kidney stone will get passed. He has to keep drinking water to move the stone out of his system. In fact, I noticed that I usually would have a kidney stone about once a year or 18 months, when I had slowed down on drinking water. It is highly important to stay well hydrated. It is my understanding that keeping well hydrated will help prevent the stones from forming, or will help keep them small enough so that they do not hurt (as badly) when being passed.

And, of course, with Polycystic Kidney Disease, blood in the urine will be a common problem. Does your friend have a regular nephrologist? Is he going to see the nephrologist on a regular basis? That is the only other advice I have. Stay current with his kidney doctor so that they can track the progress of the disease and keep him ready for any problems that may come his way.


I hope my e-mail was helpful. I just sent that exact text to M.R. earlier today. I hope everyone is having a good week. I had my bone density scan on Monday, and I am still in "Increased Fracture Risk" like I was six months ago. I'll know more when I see the doctor in a couple of weeks. If I get a chance, I'll try to post the results of the test between tomorrow and the next doctor's visit.

Have a great day!