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Have you ever wondered if you could be a living kidney donor?

Photo of Terri Thede with two donor recipients

The National Kidney Donation Organization (NKDO) blog has been on hiatus, but we’re excited to bring it back for our members and readers. With a new website, new stories to share via our blog, and a continued focus on donor education and advocacy, we’re making a difference for patients waiting for a transplant. Our latest blog entry is from Terri Thede, a 2017 Loyola University Medical Center living kidney donor, and Project Manager for NKDO. 


Have you ever wondered if you could be a living kidney donor? In 2017, I considered this question, and was grateful for any opportunity to speak with someone who had already been through the process. I was a mom of three young adults, 54-years old, moderately active, and healthy. But I still had a lot of questions – Where should I donate? How long would I be in the hospital? What out-of-pocket expenses might I incur? How long before I felt normal? And while transplant team members are remarkably skilled, they usually do not have a living kidney donor on their staff who can share first-hand experience.  

If you, or someone you know, is in this position and considering living kidney donation, I encourage you to attend the free webinar sponsored and moderated by the National Kidney Donation Organization (NKDO) on Thursday, September 8, at 6pm EST. The NKDO’s mission is to educate prospective living kidney donors to donate as safely and effectively as possible. They are devoted to helping end the US kidney crisis.  

During this one-hour session, Ned Brooks, the founder and CEO of NKDO and himself a living kidney donor, will moderate a panel of three living kidney donors who will share their experience and respond to common myths about living kidney donation. The questions I had when I was considering donation, and many more, will be addressed. 

In 2017, I moved forward with living kidney donation to a stranger. I was thrilled to meet my recipient three months after donation and I know that, five years post-donation, we are both doing great! The picture below is from left to right, me, my recipient’s wife (who donated on his behalf as part of 3-donor, 3-recipient chain on the day I donated to my recipient), and my recipient. My experience was positive, and like most donors, I would donate again if I could.  

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the questions, the details, and the what-ifs. I encourage you to register for this webinar at, listen to those stories of those who have been through the process, and ask your questions. I’ll be there…I hope you can join me! 

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