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Local mother desperate to find teen son a kidney replacement

A local mother is pleading for help to find her 16-year-old son a kidney replacement after he was diagnosed with stage 5 chronic kidney disease. Candice Spencer reached out to News Channel 3 after being told that her son has a blood type that makes it more difficult to find a match for a kidney replacement.

"He has B positive blood and they said it’s like a one in 100,000 chance of trying to find a deceased donor with his blood type, so we’re better off trying to find a living donor to give him a kidney," said Spencer.

The journey for Lakai hasn't been easy. His mother watched him overcome leukemia, but in the same year doctors said he was in remission is the same year they discovered kidney complications.

"They said that his kidneys were failing. They thought he wouldn’t need dialysis for another 1- 2 years. Within 2 months they said his kidneys were shutting down," said Spencer.

Lakai's life has been turned upside down after having to miss school and undergo dialysis several hours a week. He has to hook up to dialysis 12 hours every night, according to Spencer.

"This kid has been in so much pain and it’s unbelievable but he still has a smile on his face and you know he’s in excruciating pain."

The family is constantly back and forth between their Desert Hot Springs home and Loma Linda Medical Center. Seeing what her son has constantly endured has weighed on Spencer.

"It’s hard because I just want him to go back and be a regular kid and not have to worry about getting put on his machine at night, not being able to go to your friend’s house to spend the night because you got to worry about the machine and just stuff like that. I’ve seen him in so much pain and this kid is like the strongest kid I know," Spencer said.

Spencer is hopeful that someone will come forward to help Lakai get the help he needs.

"If you’r going to donate, your kidney is going to a kid that will actually need it and appreciate it. It’s going to a kid that wants to live and doesn’t want to be on a machine for the rest of his life."

Anyone willing to donate a kidney with type B positive blood can reach out to https://lluh.org/transplant-institute/our-services/kidney-transplant/living-kidney-donor-program.

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Shelby Nelson

Shelby Nelson is a News Reporter for KESQ News Channel 3. She joined our team in September 2019 after living in San Francisco for 6 years. Learn more about Shelby here.

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