Teens' Christmas wish: A kidney for grandmother

Teens' Christmas wish: A kidney for grandmother

Posted: Updated:
FRANKLIN, Ga. -

Two local children are searching for the perfect gift this holiday season: they're trying to find a kidney for their beloved grandmother.

For various reasons, none of Beverly Wiggins' family members qualifies to donate. They've now made it their mission to find someone who can.

Finding a kidney for their grandmother is their only wish for Christmas this year,

Beverly has dealt with polycystic kidney disease for the past several years.

"My kidneys are down to about 9 percent function and I do dialysis three days a week," Wiggins said.

Wiggins is on the donor list but Trey and his sister Sarah hope they can speed up the process by being creative.  

"We kind of decided together, with the help of our mom, to put it on Facebook so more people would see it," said Sarah Wiggins.

When Wiggins found out, she could hardly believe it.

"It's just unimaginable that they came up with it and thought enough of me to try to help me find me a kidney," Wiggins said. "I know they love me, but I just didn't know to the degree."

Trey and Sara's dad, Ken, said his kids' actions didn't come as a surprise.

"This is the Christmas season and it was their idea, ‘Maybe let's try to see if we could get gran a kidney," Ken Wiggins said.

So now the hunt is on. Any donor must have O-type blood to match Beverly's and go through a range of interviews to find out if they're an exact match. Even if they're not, Beverly says the effort won't be for nothing.

"There are a lot of people out there that needs organs," Beverly Wiggins said.

This family hopes there's just as many willing to donate.

"Out of all the people that are going to see this, there's probably one person that's willing to donate one for us," said Trey Wiggins.

Kidney donor information:

How to be a living kidney donor...
 
1. Individual donor (directly donate to Beverly Wiggins)
•    blood type match (type O)
•    phone interview with Piedmont Hospital to review past and current medical history
•    thorough medical exam to protect donor
 
2. Paired kidney exchange (mixing and matching recipients and their donors)
•    donor blood type does not matter because Beverly's donor gives to another recipient, whose donor matches and gives to Beverly (2 people receive transplant)
•    phone interview with Piedmont Hospital to review past and current medical history
•    thorough medical exam to protect donor
No medical expenses to the donor. Medical expenses are covered by recipient's insurance.
 
More information on living donation:
piedmonttransplant.org/livingdonor
paireddonation.org
unos.org/docs/living_donation_kidneypaired.pdf

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