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Martin's Story

Martin's Story

Martin, 55, renal patient

Martin has been on dialysis for four years. It all started with his foot swelling up one day.

“The swelling would go down, and then come up again. Eventually after tests, they identified focal segmental glomerulosclerosis as the reason why my kidneys were not working. The kidneys leak like tea bags, so the fluid ended up in my foot.”

Martin had two years of steroids at first, to see if that would clear it. Unfortunately it didn’t and he’s been on haemodialysis ever since.

Martin says:

“This has completely changed my life, I can’t work anymore, this is it. Before this I was a construction controller for various factories, including parts for Ford. But physically it has changed me, I used to do a 5 mile walk at the weekend, now I can only just about get to the car. My energy drops as I have renal anaemia too. I hadn’t realised how much the kidneys do until this.”

“When you first come you have lots of questions but the nurses help. They might be busy but they always make time for you. I’m the test dummy, all the new nurses get me. My fissure is really good so it gives a new nurse a lot of confidence. We are very fond of the nurses.”

“I used to go away every weekend somewhere; used to make it a long weekend and now I can’t. Now I read a lot, watch a lot of TV; play games on the computer. I’ve met a lot of lovely people but the sad thing is you lose a lot of lovely people too.”

“I can’t have a kidney transplant as last one failed, it went terribly wrong in 2018. When they connected it all up they found the main blood vessel was not letting the blood through fast enough – said it was like cutting through wire. Initially that was difficult and when I was down I felt really low. Fortunately or unfortunately I had had mental health problems before so I had been taught lots of coping strategies.”

“The first few years whilst I was still healthy I did everything I wanted to do so I don’t have that regret. One thing left on my list, the last thing I want to do before I die is go in the sea again. I love swimming in the sea. I love the fish! I took bread crumbs in the sea once and my short pockets had holes in and they all came around me, huge carp.”

“It would make a massive difference to me to have my appointments in the Courtyard Clinic. I would be able to go to appointments on my days off from dialysis. It would make a huge difference to me as I can’t afford to miss a session.”

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