With World Kidney Day just passing on Thursday 12th March, the Prince of Wales Hospital Foundation celebrates the remarkable and ground-breaking research taking place at The Prince of Wales Hospital, particularly as this year marks 55 years since the first kidney transplant in New South Wales (NSW). Continuing to grow as a national public health issue, more than 1 in 10 Australians suffer from Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), while 1 in 3 are at risk of CKD.
One patient that has truly benefitted from the research and innovation at the Hospital is kidney transplant recipient Lorraine Anker, now 67 years old who says the experience at Prince of Wales Hospital has left her with a feeling of endless gratitude towards her donor and dear friend, Judy Mitchell. For Lorraine, it was a waiting game that she knew was coming and the news of her diminishing kidney function came as no surprise at age 30. Her mother had been affected by hereditary polycystic kidney disease.
Following a 4WD trip around Cape York with the family in 2009, Lorraine returned home only to feel abnormally exhausted. Following some blood tests, the doctors confirmed that her kidney was functioning at 15% capacity.
Wife and mum of three, Lorraine underwent her kidney transplant on 10th December 2010. Without question, Lorraine’s husband Tony, dived into the process of becoming Lorraine’s donor. After six-months, it was found that Tony was incompatible with Lorraine, followed by several others of Tony’s siblings and other friends. Finally, a selfless friend of Lorraine’s, Judy was found compatible and became Lorraine’s renal donor.
Living in Wollongong at the time, Lorraine met Judy through their young daughters attending the same school. After returning to Sydney with the family, Judy and Lorraine remained friends.
10 years on from her transplant, Lorraine is still living life to the fullest, running around after grandchildren, keeping fit and has previously competed in The Australian Transplant Games in 2012 and 2014 with Judy.
The Prince of Wales Hospital Foundation – the charity arm of the hospital – with generous support of a major donor and other supporters has raised over $1 million for kidney disease research and the Prince of Wales Hospital Kidney Biobank. Headed up by Professor Zoltan Endre, Head of the Nephrology Department, the southeast Sydney’s first kidney biobank aims to accelerate new advances in patient treatment, early detection and care.
Prince of Wales Hospital Foundation CEO Andrew Giles, says, “The Foundation is committed to providing ongoing support for such vital research and innovation at the Prince of Wales Hospital Kidney Biobank. The Prince of Wales Hospital Kidney Biobank will help provide critical information towards early detection and intervention, ultimately providing better patient treatment and care for patients.”
Thanks to continued support from the Prince of Wales Hospital Foundation, patients like Lorraine can receive the best possible treatment and care.
To donate to the Prince of Wales Hospital Foundation and their continued support of the Kidney Biobank, visit www.powhf.org.au
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