Siobhan and Brent Clayton are putting out an ask to the community unlike no other — they are seeking a kidney for Siobhan.
Siobhan, along with her husband, are longtime Comox Valley residents. In February 2021, she was diagnosed with kidney failure and now relies on kidney dialysis three times a week to keep her alive.
A transplant would allow Siobhan a chance to have the kind of life she had prior to her diagnosis; she recently put a call out on social media seeking a living donor.
The couple is the next guest on Off The Page, the weekly podcast by the Comox Valley Record.
Siobhan describes her health journey and how she discovered she had polycystic kidneys for more than 10 years. Last year she was slowly getting sick but didn’t pay too much attention, as she attributed it to getting older.
“I was just determined just to keep working and didn’t really focus on my own health at all. Because of that, I ended up getting very sick and then had to suddenly be taken to hospital. On Feb. 3, I was diagnosed with multi-organ failure,” she explains.
She discovered she had a perforated bowel and her body was septic. She had surgery and her heart stopped twice, but she pulled through, notes Brent, who is a registered nurse.
“It was awful. Obviously, I didn’t know how sick she was, she was really keeping to herself more and more. I knew she was ill,” he adds.
Putting a call-out seeking a living donor was something that Siobhan felt apprehensive about initially, but was encouraged by her nephrologist who noted it could bring about more attention around organ donation in general.
“I’m definitely aware that it’s a huge ask. It took a lot for me to put that out there and a big ask of somebody … I mean, somebody who would be willing to do that for us would be absolutely amazing. It would be life-changing.”
Siobhan is on a cadaver list but in B.C. the time-frame is more than 10 years, so the outcome would be better with a living donor, she adds.
As for what keeps her going and her outlook on her future? You’ll have to listen to the episode to find out.
For more information or to learn more about living donation, contact the donor nurse co-ordinator at St. Paul’s Hospital at 1-877-922-9822 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
New episodes of Off The Page drop every Wednesday.