My first diagnosis of CKD was in 2013 when I returned from a project on the Mongolia border. I attribute this to the poor diet management on my project sites. My creatinine was 2.2mg/dl then, and I managed to keep it at that level for two years. It increased to over 6mg/dl in 2015 during the time when I had to move a factory from Belgium to India.
I am a 60 year old from Bandra, Bombay, settled in Pune since 2013. I have lived for several years in the US as well as in Bangalore. I had a very active lifestyle. I played tennis for two hours every day and had a passion for long motorbike rides. I have toured extensively within India, Europe and the West Coast of the USA. I am still a member of Harley Pune. I am a Logistics professional, with a difference. I literally move mountains. My expertise is in moving entire factories, power plants, and other such enormous units.
The long work hours, cold weather, and poor food took a toll on my health.
I still remained active and managed to go about my work till 2018. In February that year, while returning from a holiday abroad, the long haul flight led to water retention, and on landing, I had to be rushed to the ICU. My dialysis started on 28th February with two sessions a week, which kept me in fairly good health. Meanwhile, my heart function was also compromised with a LVEF of only 30 percent.
Ironically, the diet prescribed for heart disease and kidney disease are contradictory. I was mentally disturbed to a point where it began taking a toll on my physical well being. I took a bold decision to throw my dietary restrictions out of the window and began to eat everything, although in moderation. I followed a vegetarian diet five days a week and took non-vegetarian meals twice a week. This, fortunately, had a positive impact on my body, and I was able to cut down dialysis to one session a week. My urine output also improved considerably.
However, in July 2019, due to a blockage in my vein, my fistula arm began to turn blue. My body could not take the stress of the balloon angioplasty and I am back on bi-weekly dialysis with a lower urine output, and require nutritional supplements to maintain heart function. Due to my existing heart condition, there are risks involved if I undergo transplant. Also, the restrictions which I will have to follow with both organs in mind , will clash at most levels and therefore ,I will have to survive on life-long dialysis.
Still, looking back, I feel a sense of satisfaction. My children are settled and my wife is financially secure. Life goes on, and yes, life is good. The mantra is to: Live till you die.