My transplant opened my eyes to the need for organ donors

Eryn Mathewson, CNN producer and New Mexico native, opens up about her very unexpected organ transplant and the importance of organ donation among minority communities.

Source: CNN

My CNN colleague Richard Roth recently needed a kidney transplant — his second in nearly 25 years. The email announcing he’d gotten the organ and was so grateful for his donor made me smile and cry a little.

I was over-the-moon happy for Roth. He’s not only alive — he’s a recipient of and witness to sheer human kindness. Organs are limited resources, as are the donors — living and deceased — who are willing to share them.

I also have a donor to thank.

Despite my health challenges, I choose to heal

Five months ago, a young man I never met saved my life. My liver stopped working — suddenly and unexpectedly — and I was told I needed a new one to survive. My doctors suspect I had a toxic reaction to a medication I was taking to treat a rare and newly diagnosed condition. I was considered a “Status 1A” patient, which meant I didn’t have months or even weeks to wait for a new liver.

I had days before I would likely go into a coma and die.

But surgeons, social workers and administrators sprang into action. Over the next few days, they came across a liver from a young man who was the best match in terms of organ size, blood type and other factors.

Read full story here.