Kidney disease patient continues courageous fight - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Kidney disease patient continues courageous fight

Rod Nakabayashi Rod Nakabayashi

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

AIEA (KHNL) - Honolulu Hale is among the buildings around the globe lighting up in blue to mark World Diabetes Day. Organizers expect about 50 to 100 diabetics and family members will help raise awareness and push for a cure at the ceremony on Oahu Friday night.

Rod Nakabayashi, a diabetic in need of a kidney transplant, continues his courageous fight.

"This is my insulin," he said as he pulled a box out of a plastic container.

It's a process Nakabayashi must go through several times a day.

"I roll this this way to get the mixture right," he said as he rolled the bottle in his hand.

He wipes his leg with an alcohol swab and loads up his needle with insulin.

"I take about 20 units," he said.

Then he gives himself the injection he needs.

"I take about five shots a day," he said. "Morning, lunch, evening, and before I go to bed I take two shots."

The diabetic also takes 13 other medications each day, as he awaits a new kidney and pancreas.

"My hopes are high," he said.

We first met Nakabayashi in April. The long-time flight attendant lost his job and medical coverage when Aloha Airlines abruptly shut down.

Two months ago, he suffered a stroke and a setback.

"I was on the transplant list, but they took me off because of the stroke," he said. "I had to see a doctor to get a clearance, and then I got back on the transplant list. So I'm kind of way on the bottom again."

He undergoes dialysis four times a week, four hours each sitting.

"I just look around and hope for everyone to get a transplant 'cause there's people, you know, that really need it more than I do," he said.

On this World Diabetes Day, Nakabayashi has a message. Eat right, exercise and take care of your body.

"I really didn't take care of my diabetes, and then it led to kidney disease," he said. "And diabetes is a silent killer."

Nakabayashi says, at this point, his wife's health insurance and Medicare will cover a kidney transplant, but not a pancreas operation.

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