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Your Healthy Family: 25 year old Colorado Springs man battles kidney disease

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Dominic Maffia, a 25 year old Colorado Springs man who is not your typical kidney patient. Dominic Maffia, a 25 year old Colorado Springs man who is not your typical kidney patient.
COLORADO SPRINGS -

Team Maffia is one of the many teams that will be at Memorial Park this Sunday morning for the Kidney Walk.  No, it's not a team of gangsters, it's a team supporting Dominic Maffia, a 25 year old Colorado Springs man who is not your typical kidney patient.

Dominic says his kidney problems began with “IgA Nephropathy, it's an autoimmune disease.  My kidneys were spilling too much protein into my system and they weren't processing it properly so.”

Dominic discovered his kidney disease two and half years ago when he tried to join the army.  Four months ago his kidney's failed.  His reality since then has been 3 dialysis appointments every week, lasting about 4 hours each.

However, he’s not letting it get him down, “My quality of life has been a lot higher than most (kidney patients) I think it's mainly because I'm so young and relatively healthy, other than my kidneys.  It's mostly boring, I am an active person I can't just sit there and not do something sitting in a chair for 4 hours.  They have TV you can watch, and other things you can do but  you're tied to it (the chair) and you can't move.”

Dominic is a perfect example that kidney disease can affect anyone.  “It can hit anybody.  My doctors seems to think it came from too many protein powders when I would work out all the time.  We don't know when the kidney disease started, we just found out about it two years ago, so it’s hard to say for sure.”

Dominic has a transplant date on the calendar for October 16th.  It's almost certain his mom is a match that his body won’t reject.  His father was the first family member to be tested for a possible kidney donation, but he wasn’t a match after testing.  

Dominic says to be in the position to have to accept a kidney from someone else, especially his mom is hard to describe.  “I'm not normally a person who will accept a lot of help, and then being someone who needs that help, and I have had so many people say they are willing, we have a list of 32 people that are willing to be tested, it’s humbling.  Humbling doesn't even begin to describe it, but it makes me feel very loved, I'm very blessed.”

Dominic volunteers with the Palmer Lake Fire Department, and once his his transplant is behind him, a career serving others and saving lives will be his focus.  “Ultimately firefighting is where I'm going to end up.  Whether that's starting small working my way up, or going to school getting all the certifications I need, and then doing it that way.”

And if you're coming to the Kidney Walk on Sunday, make sure to look for Dominic's team.

“Team Maffia, we've got orange and black shirts with a tuxedo on the front, and on the back is the Godfather marionette, with a kidney and on the bottom it says, ‘make me an offer I can't refuse’.”

The Kidney Walk this Sunday morning at Memorial Park.  Registration opens at 8:30, and the run/walk is at 10 a.m. and you don't need to be on a team to come out and walk or run and make a difference in someone's life.


You can get more information from the National Kidney Foundation here: http://donate.kidney.org/site/TR/Walk/NKFServingtheMid-West?fr_id=8524&pg=entry

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