Benefit today for Perham teenager
When Perham sophomore Tiffany Nustad was diagnosed in March with stage 5 kidney disease, her family flashed back to the days surrounding her birth.
Nustad weighed 1 pound, 9 ounces at birth and measured just 12.5 inches long. Doctors weren't overly optimistic with Nustad's situation, giving her only a 30 percent chance of survival.
She pulled through and, after 74 days in the hospital, went home to be with her family. Nustad takes part in athletics and school activities, and family members describe her as a "remarkable child."
Nustad's recent diagnosis came after she felt ill earlier this spring.
She booked a doctor's appointment and was referred to the Children's Hospital in Minneapolis, where she was diagnosed with kidney disease.
According to doctors, her situation had become so dire that dialysis began immediately. Doctors also began testing for live donors.
As of now, her kidneys are functioning at 9 percent. Until a match is found, Nustad will continue to undergo dialysis, which takes up a great portion of her life. Every week, she spends three days undergoing the treatment, with each session lasting at least four hours.
Doctors hope a donor is found within the next month, which would be followed by a transplant surgery.
Even after the surgery, things won't be completely back to normal for the Perham student. Follow-up will include regular doctor visits and expensive anti-rejection pills, which she'll have to take for her entire life.
A benefit hosted by friends and family of the Nustads for Tiffany will be held at 11 a.m. on Sunday, May 22, in the Cactus, Perham. The benefit will include silent and live auctions, raffle games and children's activities, along with a meal.
The benefit fund for Nustad is established in her name at Bremer Bank.