Sarah and Josh's story

Sarah was the primary carer for her brother Josh, who lives with Lupus and as a result, kidney disease. In addition to everyday responsibilities to help Josh manage his conditions, which included taking over 20 medications a day and dialysing three times a week, caring for Josh left Sarah in a constant worry about the life of someone so dear to her.

“Watching him deteriorate and having gone through so many ups and downs, rushes to hospitals for ICU admissions and close calls, it’s crushing and incredibly sad.”

Sarah was deeply affected by Josh’s ongoing pain and suffering. When Josh’s health hit a further low point in late 2020, he made the decision to go into palliative care. Stepping in as a family member and carer, Sarah advised him to look into organ donation first. After a while waiting for a suitable donor, Sarah learned she was an organ donor match. Happily, the transplant surgery was a complete success and both brother and sister are enjoying their much-deserved good health.

Sarah found support in using Kidney Health Australia resources such as their Kidney Helpline, which was really useful to answer questions or to provide information about what she and Josh could expect in going through the transplant process.

'Having experienced a loved one live with a chronic and life-threatening condition, Sarah urges others to never take relationships or health for granted.'

By sharing their story, Sarah and Josh hope to raise more awareness and support for kidney disease, and encourage others to get a Kidney Health Check.

This case study is based on an interview with a person who is living with chronic kidney disease. This personal account is not necessarily representative of the circumstances of other people with chronic kidney disease or the challenges they may face, but it is our hope that it will give readers a greater awareness and understanding of the diversity of people’s experiences with CKD.

The information provided does not contain medical advice – consult a qualified healthcare professional for guidance relating to your personal medical needs.