Former UK doctor who received double-lung transplant now needs new kidney

Former UK doctor who received double-lung transplant now needs new kidney
Published: Nov. 16, 2023 at 10:55 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - 10 months, three weeks and three days. That was how long Kevin Bauereis and his wife waited to find two new lungs for Kevin.

“He was just deteriorating so quickly,” said Kara.

Born with cystic fibrosis, Kevin was told as a child he would maybe live to be 18. Yet he just celebrated his 40th birthday last year.

“I threw a surprise party for his 40th, and we had some friends that he grew up with and were his best friends in high school,” Kara said. “He told me after the party, ‘I honestly never thought we’d have that party.’”

He went through the double transplant all while working in UK’s operating room as a doctor. Kara says his recovery since May 7, 2013 has been inspiring. He isn’t taking a single day for granted.

“He has just really taken advantage of living life,” said Kara, adding he loves the outdoors, from hiking to biking to hunting. “I mean he was 30 miles into the mountains on horseback for seven days. It’s extremely surreal.”

But now, Kara says they’re in need of a different organ.

“The medication that he has to take for his body not to be able to reject (his lungs), he’ll take them for life, and those are very hard on a patient’s kidneys,” Kara said.

While she says this is common in situations like his, Kevin’s adventurous lifestyle now hinges on how his monthly lab work looks. They’re in need of another donor as soon as possible.

“We are trying to keep him as healthy as possible, because we want to get him a living donor before he has to start dialysis,” said Kara.

Ten years on from the last transplant, Kevin and Kara are left waiting and hoping once again - six months and counting.

“I think my biggest question would be are you willing to share your spare?” Kara asked. “We would be absolutely humbled for your support.”

Kara says Kevin needs a Type O donor and is on the waitlist at UK. He’s looking for a living donor because it will help him live a better life afterward. If you’re considering donating, you can call UK’s Living Donor Hotline at 859-323-2467, or visit this link to learn more.