Local family shares experience with pediatric transplant waiting list

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GRANBY, Connecticut (WFSB) – April 18-24 is National Pediatric Transplant Week.

It is devoted a week to ending the pediatric transplant waiting list.

A young girl in Connecticut was able to get off that list when she found an unexpected match for a kidney transplant.

Piper Lundin, from Granby, loves gymnastics and lacrosse.

She was always an active kid until the 7-year-old came home one day in 2016 with a terrible stomach ache.

“I couldn’t do gymnastics. I couldn’t even go to school, ”Lundin said.

Her parents immediately took her to the emergency room.

“They determined she had a disease called HSP,” said Sarah Lundin.

Anyone who wants to become a donor can register at: donatelife.net/register

“Henoch-Schönlein purpura, which is a fairly rare disease,” explained Dr. Oscar Serrano of Hartford HealthCare explains.

The disease causes inflammation and bleeding in the small blood vessels.

The family teamed up with Dr. Serrano, who said that for a few years Piper had gotten to the point where she needed a kidney transplant.

She was waiting to get one in February 2020. When the pandemic hit and the transplant program ended.

Rather than wait for the program to start, Piper’s parents decided to get tested to see if they were matches to donate their kidneys.

“It was great to both be a match,” said Piper’s father Mark Lundin.

He was originally going to give Piper his kidney, but when doctors started operating, they found they couldn’t safely remove his kidney.

“We came out of surgery to not have the success we were looking for,” said Mark Lundin.

Five weeks later, after Mark recovered from surgery, Piper’s mother Sarah stepped in to donate her kidney to her daughter.

“It was great. I feel great. I’m very lucky to have been able to do that,” said Sarah.

After a long journey, Piper is finally a child again.

“I feel amazing. I started lacrosse again a month ago and I feel great, ”said Piper.

And she owes it all to her parents.

“I don’t know how I could have gotten through without them,” she added.

More information about the Pediatric Transplant Week can be found at DonateLife.net.

Anyone who wants to become a donor can register at: donatelife.net/register

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