Supporting Local News

Kidney transplant recipient Michelle fit and healthy after 'rollercoaster ride'

Salthill native Michelle Geraghty describes life with kidney disease as ‘a never-ending rollercoaster ride’.

That ride began in late 2000 when she developed septicaemia after an otherwise minor kidney infection. A kidney ultrasound was ordered and she was diagnosed with a genetic condition known as Polycystic Kidney Disease or PKD.

Back then, she had 100% kidney function so after a few months, her life returned to normal.

But she knew she was likely to need a kidney transplant at some point in the future.

“At the time, my positive mindset, or more likely my ignorance, saw my diagnosis as little more than a future inconvenience. I had no real idea how tough kidney failure would be or how dialysis would turn my life upside down. I certainly wasn’t worrying about how this might impact my future children and I never considered that it might be difficult to find a kidney one day.”

Her kidney function began to decline in her 30s, which is typical for people with her particular variant of PKD.

By late 2007, she had moved to Dublin and was married to Eoin and the couple spent six years trying for a baby, made all the more complicated by her condition.

They were blessed with a healthy son in 2018, but during his first two years she went from 45% kidney function to end-stage kidney failure.

“I was weak, dizzy and fatigued and life with a toddler was tough. When Covid-19 hit, we went into complete isolation until we were both fully vaccinated. Eoin took voluntary redundancy to be a stay-at-home dad for a year and by December 2020, I was on peritoneal dialysis at home for eight hours a night, seven nights a week.”

When Michelle was accepted onto the kidney transplant list, she learned from tests carried out that statistically the tissue antibodies in her blood would reject an organ from 98% of a sample of 1,000 donors in the Irish database.

To read the rest of Michelle’s story, see this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can purchase a digital edition HERE. You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app

The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

More like this:

Sign Up To get Weekly Sports UPDATES

Go Up