It can happen to any child. Gina is an 18-year-old girl who loves Tumblr, drawing and anime, and was in color guard all four years of high school. She was first diagnosed with FSGS when she was 5 years old. However, since a successful kidney transplant with her father in 2013, she has shown no signs of FSGS.
t can happen at any time. When Gina was 4 years old, her mother, Julie, had taken her for a routine doctors appointment. Gina kept having to urinate and Julie thought it may have been a urinary tract infection. However, the doctor saw that Gina was passing protein. Julie took Gina to Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago to get a second opinion. In December 2001, Gina was officially diagnosed with FSGS after a biopsy.
Gina’s parents had first learned about NephCure from doctors and nurses in 2004, and quickly became involved in the NephCure community. Despite her condition, Gina was never hospitalized for her FSGS and was always full of energy. In late 2012, Gina started to slow down. She would always be exhausted right after her return from school or color guard practice, and she’d sleep the rest of the night.
In 2013, her father, David, was a match for a kidney transplant. The transplant proved to be successful, and after a stint of dialysis right after the transplant, her FSGS has not reappeared since July 15, 2013. In the first couple of years after the transplant, Gina saw a specialist every three months as a precaution, but now she only has to go to the doctor twice a year.
Some stories do have a happy ending. Gina has a great sense of humor about the condition that plagued her and her transplant, and has named her new kidney Geoffrey. Her family feels extremely grateful and lucky for all of the support that NephCure gave them over he years that Gina suffered from FSGS that they continue to support the organization.