Hello, my name is Emma. I am 28 years old, married with 2 children. I have Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)
It all started when I was very young, I kept getting Urinary Tract Infections and my Mum was constantly told I had cystitis. One day a doctor said that a child of my age should not be getting reoccurring cystitis and sent me to have a scan of my kidneys. The scan showed I had severe scarring on my kidneys due to reflux and at the age of 5, I had an operation to correct it.
I do not remember much about that time, just little snippets here and there. After the op everything seemed to be fine and I got on with growing up healthily and happily.
Then in early 2004 I went to the GP to have my contraceptive pill check-up. My blood pressure (BP) was high so the doctor arranged for me to go back the following week so it could be checked again. It was still high (I cannot remember the numbers, but it was high enough for concern) I was then sent for some blood tests.
I was referred to the renal team and Scunthorpe General Hospital for them to investigate. However, I moved to Essex in August 2004 so had to get everything transferred down to The Hassengate Medical Centre here in Stanford-Le-Hope. I made an appointment and saw the GP to explain my situation and my raised BP. He asked me if I smoked, which I did at the time, he snorted back "There is nothing wrong with you, stop smoking!!" I was gobsmacked! He was not interested in hearing about my kidneys whatsoever.
In May 2005 I fell pregnant and explained my previous kidney operation with the midwife, I was classed as high risk and was monitored very closely during my pregnancy. I was put on BP medication but unfortunately at 37 weeks I developed pre-eclampsia and was induced.
I was seen by the renal team after my pregnancy and monitored. In 2008 I fell pregnant with my 2nd child. Thankfully that pregnancy was a lot smoother kidney wise. After my son was born I missed two appointments with the renal team so they cancelled my care with them. It was very stupid of me, but life sort of got in the way, my youngest son needed an operation so my health took a backseat.
In August 2010 I was starting to feel a bit poorly so went back to the GP, had some blood tests and was referred back to the renal clinic. In my stupidity and not keeping up with appointments and medication I ended up with stage 3 kidney disease. My eGFR was 42.
Since then I have been really good, I have made every single appointment and kept on top of my medication. However, things have slowly been declining. I was told that I would be looking at, at least 10-20 years before reaching End Stage Renal Disease. Unfortunately that does not seem to be the case now!!!