There's a fundraiser coming up July 29, 1 p.m., at the on Social Street for Autumn Trudeau, 5, who's waiting for a kidney transplant — and her family would love for you to swing by.
Tickets are $20 and will get you a DJ, dancing, raffles, beer and dynamites. You'll also be helping a little girl and her family weather a life-threatening medical challenge.
Autumn has Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), a rare disease that attacks the kidney’s filtering system, causing scarring and kidney failure, said Dr. Michael Somers, a pediatric nephrologist with Boston Children's Hospital.
Everybody's kidneys have about a million filtering units each, Somers said. For people with FSGS, for reasons that aren't clear, the filtering units become scarred and stop working. When a person's kidneys only have 10 to 15 percent of their filtering units left, Somers said, it's not enough for them to operate.
Treatment comes in two forms: dialysis, or a kidney transplant. A transplant requires a donor who's a close match for the patient, said Somers.
Fortunately, said Beth Boucher, Autumn's mom, "We have a match," Autumn's aunt, Beth's sister.
For the time being, though, at least another six months, Autumn has to rely on peritoneal dialysis, which, according to the Mayo clinic website, uses your abdominal lining to fill in for your kidneys. A tube implanted in Autumn's abdomen has to be hooked up to a dialysis machine 12 hours a day, Boucher said.
"We try to do it at night," said Boucher, but it's tough to keep Autumn comfortable throughout the night that way.
The transplant and the dialysis can run up to about $12,000 per month, and aren't covered all the way by their health insurance, Boucher said. "We try to keep up with most of this," she said. Even so, the family has accumulated about $15,000 in debt.
Boucher's hoping to raise enough money to cover renting the Elks hall, and put a dent in their bills.
"Her family has done quite a good job with her and supporting her every step of the way," said Somers. The latest step in that support comes Sunday, with a little help.
Anyone interested in making a donations for the family can send them to 363 Park Ave, WNRI, or Debbie's Breakfast place on Park Ave.