In a story last week (The Pontes reach out for a kidney) about Kenny Ponte of Oak Bluffs, who needs a kidney transplant, we neglected to include the Pontes’ telephone number. In spite of the omission, five potential donors have contacted his wife, Erica, who initiated the local campaign to find a donor by writing a letter to the Times last month.
Laurel Reddington of MVY Radio referenced the Times story on the air and received two phone calls, and Ms. Ponte was approached by three willing friends and acquaintances who were unfamiliar with Mr. Ponte’s plight before reading the story.
Ms. Ponte asks anyone interested in exploring the possibility of donating a kidney to call her at 508-939-0370. She will then put them in touch with a donor coordinator at Mass General. “After that it’s all confidential,” she says. “They would meet with the donor coordinator who would evaluate them by doing blood work and a physical. They’re looking for people who are generally healthy and have A or O blood type. No high blood pressure, not overweight, no cancer, no diabetes. Smokers can be considered, but they must quit smoking three months before the operation.”
To find out more about kidney transplants in general, refer to the National Kidney Foundation at www.kidney.org.