(WEHT)- Tri-State man Tim Coudret didn’t ask for polycystic kidney disease (PKD) nor did he do anything to get it. Instead, like his father and his brother, Coudret is one of 500,000 Americans suffering from the genetic condition that could lead to renal failure and possibly death.
Coudret’s doctor, Dr. Chip Walsh, says the condition causes the body to replace healthy kidney tissue with blood or water filled cysts that, over time, will reduce their function. Coudret says he still had half of his kidney function when he turned 30 but in the eight years since his kidney function has deteriorated to just 15 percent. If his situation gets worse, he could end up on dialysis.
Coudret, like over 107,000 others, is on a waiting list for an organ but with the need far outstripping the number of kidneys available, Coudret is hoping to raise awareness to the need he and so many others are facing.
Coudret says he owes it to his family: his son, 7, and his wife to exhaust all possible options to get a kidney and live as long as he can. Coudret and Dr. Walsh say people can live healthy, normal lives with just one kidney. Dr. Walsh adds a number of people already do live normal lives with just one kidney, without realizing it.
IU Health completes more than 200 kidney transplants a year but kidneys don’t necessarily need to come from family members or from people who have died. Instead, a donor could theoretically be anyone.
To get the process started through IU health, people simply need to fill out an online form.