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My Family’s PKD Story

“I didn’t want to burden [my mother] with that or tell her in her last days that I had this disease”

David Birkley


My mother had PKD diagnosed maybe in 1993, received a transplant successfully taken in ’95, ’96, in that timeframe, and she lived well with it for several years and passed due to other complications unrelated to the PKD and the transplant, which was successful.

My mother and I did discuss PKD and the outcome of it, but she became sick before I got tested and passed away right around the same time.  So, I felt that I didn’t want to burden her with that or tell her in her last days that I had this disease, and I decided not to tell her, just keep it to myself and my little family that I had at the time, and she—I just didn’t want her to know.

My brother’s in his 50s.  As far as we know, he hasn’t been diagnosed with it.  He’s lived a normal life.  He’s athletic, works every day, has a family, and as far as we know doesn’t have any problems.

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