Edward Feist is living proof of the importance of organ donation.
As a recipient of two kidney transplants from live donors over the past 16 years, Edward Feist, 38, is living proof of the importance of organ donation.
He was diagnosed with vesicoureteral reflux when he was 12 months old, and despite receiving surgery, his kidneys suffered serious damage prior to correction.
While he remained healthy until his late teens, by his early 20s he was faced with the option of lifelong haemodialysis or kidney transplant.
Fortunately, his dad was a compatible donor and was able to donate his kidney to Ed in 2002. Then, three and half years ago, when Edward needed a second transplant, his mum stepped up and the two underwent surgery in January this year.
Despite the positive outcome, the experience was not without challenges.
“What people with organ failure are going through is a very different thing. Not just for you, but for your family. It’s really an emotional roller coaster – every time a potential donor fails organ matching, you’re back at the beginning.”
Ed is passionate about educating the public about the value of organ donation.
“Both of my parents are fine. You can live a normal life after live donation, and as a deceased donor you are given the opportunity to save so many lives after you are gone.”
Ed is one of the 70 patients to receive life changing surgery by RPA’s kidney and liver transplant teams so far this year.
“I feel so lucky - like this has given me a new life twice. I take medication daily but that is incomparable to the demands of haemodialysis,” he says.
On July 30, our annual Gift of Life Ceremony was held at Kerry Packer Education Centre.
Transplant recipients including Ed, living organ donors, donor families and staff gathered together to remember the gift of organ donation during DonateLife Week.
To see pictures from the ceremony click here.
For more information about organ donation and to register, see donatelife.gov.au