That's Life - March 8, 2023

March is Kidney Month, but in our family, every month is Kidney Month. That’s because my wife and both of our sons have kidney disease. This is serious business but it is a fact of life that we deal with daily. Thanks to a kidney transplant, made possible by my wife’s sister Donna, my wife is alive and kicking. Now, don’t get me started on her battle with adult Chicken Pox. That’s a whole different kettle of fish. It came as a result of her suppressed immune system, all part of the transplant and antirejection drugs. Ok, I’ll stop there.

Our oldest son had both kidneys removed on March 16, 2022. He goes to dialysis three times a week and receives amazing care from the dialysis nurses at the Drumheller Health Centre. Thanks to modern medical science and through prayers offered each week throughout this wonderful community and the entire region, our son is back on his feet, doing everything the rest of us can do. He will, one day, have a kidney transplant.

Our younger son has also been diagnosed with Kidney disease. Yes, he will, one day, require a kidney transplant as well.

My wife and both sons are polycystic kidney patients. It’s an inherited disorder in which clusters of cysts develop primarily in your kidneys, causing your kidneys to enlarge and lose function over time.

Diet is extremely important. Like an old friend once said, “Open your fridge, what tastes good probably isn’t good for you.” That’s a true statement, but you learn to live with it.

One of the most amazing facts about kidneys is you only need one to live. Even though the majority of us are born with two kidneys, one kidney provides the body with more than enough filtration to clean our blood properly.

Through research and development treatment dealing with Kidney disease has come so far, but it still has a long road ahead.

Just think back to 1943 when Willem Kolff invented the first artificial kidney that led to today’s dialysis technology. He used sausage casings, orange juice cans and a washing machine to create a rudimentary blood-cleaning mechanism.

The development of a bioartificial kidney is well underway but could be several years away from being approved for widespread use. In the meantime, be good to your body. Visit your doctor and stay on top of good health. Listen to your doctor and play by the rules to live a longer, healthier life.

Kidney disease is known as “the silent killer”. Get regular blood tests and have an annual physical examination.

About 10% of the population of Canada has Kidney disease. That’s about four million people or the entire population of Alberta. 38% of Kidney disease is caused by Diabetes.

This Kidney month learn more by going to and remember, it could save your life or the lives of others.

That’s Life.