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Isabelle & Charlotte

Two of Renee’s daughters were diagnosed with kidney disease within weeks of birth.

Isabelle (14) and Charlotte (12) will both need a kidney transplant. It is just one step towards a better quality of life – but sadly it is not a cure!

Life changed overnight for Renee and Shane when their six-week-old baby girl, Isabelle was diagnosed with a rare kidney disease.

Within weeks, Isabelle was diagnosed with a type of chronic kidney disease where thousands of cysts (fluid filled sacs) grow in the kidneys. The cysts gradually grow which makes the kidneys larger, reducing the healthy kidney tissue and making it harder for the kidneys to work properly - leading to kidney failure.

Just over two years later, when Renee and Shane were expecting their fourth child, they made sure to have every test available, their baby tested clear for kidney disease. They were over the moon.

But then, they received heart-breaking news.

“I could see the scan and I knew straight away, I just screamed, ‘she’s got it.’ I was in tears; I was a mess. We felt so much anger, sadness and grief just knowing what our poor little baby would have to go through…we were devastated.”
“To have one baby diagnosed with kidney disease was a huge shock. But to discover our other little girl also had kidney disease was beyond devastating.”
“When the girls were younger, we missed out on life with our kids; we were so scared of them getting sick, overwhelmed with everything going on.
We now make the most of the time we have together when they are well, and when they are sick we dig deep to get through the tough times - making plans for fun activities we can all look forward to when they are better.”

A better quality of life is coming soon for Isabelle and Charlotte, but at a price.

Renee and Shane know that one day soon, both girls will need a transplant. Incredibly, Shane is a perfect match for both girls, while Renee is a match for Isabelle.

A transplant is just one step towards a better quality of life and better health – but it is not a cure.

Both girls will need to take anti-rejection medication, watch their diets, and be constantly monitored for the rest of their lives.

“It’s a good feeling to know that we can rely on Kidney Health Australia for support and services and the whole community at this time. It will be challenging, but I feel so comforted to know we can get the support we need - when we need it.”
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