'Very happy': Edwardsville man who received kidney from stranger - KMOV.com

'Very happy': Edwardsville man who received kidney from stranger on road to recovery

Posted: Updated:
Brendan Woods helped celebrate donor Lesley Alexander's birthday (Credit: Woods Family) Brendan Woods helped celebrate donor Lesley Alexander's birthday (Credit: Woods Family)
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

As “Donate Life” month comes to a close, two Edwardsville families are celebrating the transplant that brought them together.

A few months ago, Brendan Woods and Lesley Alexander met for the first time. The reason why would change both of their families forever. Woods’ mom had posted on Facebook that he needed a kidney. Alexander saw it, found out they were a match, and offered her own.

The transplant happened in March, with a team from SLUCare removing Alexander’s kidney and carrying it in a cooler through a tunnel and over to SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital where Woods was waiting

Mother of Edwardsville man to donor: 'I'll never be able to thank her properly' 

“Brendan had a heart transplant as a child and the medication he was on for a while made his tissues less surgically friendly. They lost the collagen, so to sew the kidney in was a delicate procedure,” said Dr. Chintalapati Varma, SLUCare Transplant Surgeon, SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital. “But it went well and his post opp recovery is going well.”

About six weeks after that surgery, Woods was already feeling the benefits.

“Great. Doing great. Very happy. Emotional. And excited,”  Woods said, noting he appreciates only taking medicine twice a day now, rather than six times a day which is what he had to do before the transplant.

“He’s a lot more active. I don’t notice him drowsy and napping throughout the day,” said Susan Woods, his mom. “Just happier. He’s always been a happy kid but personality wise, I can see some of his old personality coming back.”

As for Alexander, a mom, veteran, and now selfless kidney donor, she is doing well, too. This past weekend, she marked her 40th birthday and the Woods family was there to help celebrate.

Copyright 2018 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved

Powered by Frankly