About Manuel

Treatment Type
Peritoneal Dialysis
Marital Status
Not at Home
Work Status
Poor Vision

Manuel was first told he had polycystic kidney disease (PKD) in 1990. He was so shocked he didn't go back to the doctor for 3 years! Despite his rocky start to kidney disease, Manuel is a survivor. And, he has achieved a remarkable quality of life.

Manuel does automated peritoneal dialysis (APD) at home, with a Baxter HomeChoice® cycler, and it helps him stay active. He babysits for his grandchildren, plays music, and directs a choir at his senior center and at nursing homes. Manuel also enjoys dance, and he gardens, walks, and visits his loved ones often. In short, he's living a full life.

Manuel's positive attitude is a huge factor in his success story, say those who work with him. Lydia Pazmino, BSc, MSc, says, "He is a remarkable man. He took his disease and chose to make the best of it. Others whine, or don't want to learn the treatment or see the cycler in their homes. They close their minds and say 'I can't do it, I cannot be responsible for my own health.' No matter what we tell Manuel, he accepts it and asks questions. He always has an attitude of 'I need to do this.'"

Even the death of his wife to cancer a few years ago hasn't eroded Manuel's motivation. "It's made him stronger, because he believes he has a health problem that is treatable. His wife wasn't so lucky," observes Frank Cumpian, a nurse who has treated him over the years.

"I'm a healthy person who just has bad kidneys," says Manuel. He chose APD over in-center hemodialysis because he could do it at home. "I'd rather have my own time and be able to go out when I want," he says. "Just because I'm sick doesn't mean I have to stay home—no way! I go to the senior center every day and play pool. Sometimes I play on my guitar for my friends. When they see me, they say, 'you don't look like you're on disability,'" he adds.

Nurse Erica Sanchez-Cohen says: "He doesn't let his kidney disease affect his life. A lot of patients feel, 'that's it, I'm homebound now.' He's taken the opposite approach. If you come to terms with it and agree this is something you'll do for the rest of your life, it greatly aids your treatment."

Besides fully embracing his PD, Manuel is also very meticulous. He keeps his medical supplies in a separate room of his clean house. And, he is very organized, showing up for his monthly checkups on time—and in good humor. "I love seeing Frank [Cumpian]," chuckles Manuel. "He makes me laugh and is always singing!"

This patient has granted Baxter International Inc. permission to use this story to help educate others about PD.