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Local Man with Rare Condition Seeks Financial Help for Kidney Transplant

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3.3 from 3 votes
Friday, October 12, 2018

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ALEXANDER CITY, Alabama - Alexander City resident David Patterson was diagnosed with a rare condition known as granulomatosis with polyangiitis, also known as Wegener's granulomatosis at the age of 15. Now, nine years later, he has found a match for a kidney transplant, but is looking for help from the public to aid in the matter financially.

"I just got the surgery date maybe two weeks ago," Patterson said. "I'm trying to raise funds. I decided to start a GoFundMe because I've seen it work before."

Realizing he and his family will have a lot of financial obligations to meet during and after the transplant procedure, including hotel rooms and medicines, Patterson felt reaching out to the public through a GoFundMe campaign to ask for some financial support would prove successful. So far, his campaign has been active for six days, and in that time, 15 people have contributed to the effort, raising a total of $660.

Wegener's granulomatosis is a very rare medical disorder, which causes blood vessels in the nose, sinuses, lungs, throat and kidneys to become inflamed. This slows blood flow and can lead to multiple symptoms, including blood in one's urine, fever, fatigue, weight loss and sinus infections, among many other things.

"I had some blood tests run when I was 15. When the test results came back, they said I was anemic," Patterson said. "Later tests showed I wasn't anemic, but my kidneys were only functioning at 3 percent. I spent a couple weeks at Children's Hospital, and they were showing me videos about dialysis. The last day I was there, I had everything packed up, and my doctor came running and said, 'I know what's wrong.' It's a rare disease, so (doctors) don't know a lot about it."

After being diagnosed, Patterson said he went on a steroid regimen and underwent chemotherapy to fight his condition. While the treatments were successful overall, his kidneys maxed out their functioning at 30 percent, which helped lead to Patterson looking for a kidney transplant.

Thankfully, Patterson was able to find a matching donor fairly recently.

"I felt it in my heart my girlfriend (Danielle Mize) would be a match," Patterson said. "She signed up to see if she would match before we even officially got together. She was not the kind of woman I would normally have considered dating before, but I felt God was telling me to try something new. I knew she was going to be it."

Along with the GoFundMe page, Patterson said his best friend Moran DeLoach has committed to helping out financially. DeLoach, who works as a waitress at Niffer's on the Lake, will be donating all of the tips she is currently earning while waitressing to the bills Patterson and his family will be facing during and after the transplant.

"It's just a friend helping out a friend," DeLoach said. "We raised around $1,500 last week. I feel we're doing good."

Along with using her tips to help cover financial matters, DeLoach said she and another mutual friend have created five donation buckets, four of which are in New Site and the fifth DeLoach says she takes with her to both of her jobs. The four located in New Site can be found at Discount/Mapco station at the intersection of Highway 22 and Highway 49, Dollar General, Generals Café and New Site Foodland.

DeLoach is also raffling off items as a fundraiser for Patterson. A $5 ticket enters participants to win a compound bow, while $3 tickets buy chances to win a brand new Coach purse and $1 tickets buy chances for gift cards to Walmart or Niffer's.

"She has been such a godsend to me," Patterson said. "She has gone above and beyond. She means a lot to me."

Patterson also said the process of getting a transplant has changed his outlook on organ donorship.

"I encourage people to research and sign up to be a donor, not just kidneys, but any organ," Patterson said. "Before this, I wouldn't have been one, but I understand it now. Being a donor can change someone's life. You can make their life change so drastically."

For those who want to donate to Patterson's GoFundMe, his campaign can be found at https://www.gofundme.com/679frns?ssid=1302362496&pos=1.

Contact:
The Outlook

Phone: (256) 234-4281
Fax: (256) 234-6550

Address:
548 Cherokee Road, Alexander City, AL 35010

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 999, Alexander City, AL 35011

Author: Donald Campbell
Source: The Alexander City Outlook
3.33333333333
3.3 from 3 votes
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