ST man seeking kidney donor

(Left to right) Wayne Dentice, Greg Dentice, Patricia Dentice, Cassin Loughrey, Barry Loughrey and Ryan Loughrey (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Greg Dentice is one of the “healthiest unhealthy people” his doctor has ever seen, and the contradictory statement makes sense when looking at the 23-year-old Stuy Town resident. Dentice is tall, although a little thinner than he used to be by his mom’s assessment, and works in construction pulling cabling for internet service. But he also has a rare disease that requires frequent doctor’s visits, hours of treatments, a strict diet and now, an organ transplant in the next few months in order to survive.

Dentice was diagnosed with a rare kidney disease known as Membranoproliferative  Glomerulonephritis (MPGN) when he was in sixth grade and until recently, the disease had been exhausting due to all the precise dietary restrictions but was manageable.

“Most foods are salty beyond what I would have imagined,” he said, explaining that his kidneys can’t filter out protein, sodium, potassium and phosphorous. “I was always an athlete but I had to portion control (once I was diagnosed) and I lost a lot of mass. Even Gatorade has phosphorous so I can only drink water.”

Dentice’s mother Patricia, a phys ed teacher at the Epiphany School for the last 20 years, said that figuring out the dietary restrictions is a balance.

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Stuyvesant Town woman seeking kidney donor

Barbara Levin

By Sabina Mollot

For the past 40 years, Stuyvesant Town resident Barbara Levin, an occupational therapist, has helped sick and disabled children develop the basic skills they need to maintain their independence, including many of her own young neighbors. However, because of a birth defect that left Levin with kidney disease — and now an imminent need for a kidney transplant — Levin is turning to the community she’s worked with for help.

Levin, who reached out to Town & Village earlier this week, said she’s been on the waiting list for a kidney from a cadaver for two and half years, but the waiting list is 7-9 years. Meanwhile, she’s already exhausted her options from friends and family. Fourteen family members as well as friends have already been tested to see if they’d be a good match and all were rejected for various medical reasons. Getting a kidney from a living donor would be ideal, she explained, because on average those last twice as long as the ones from cadavers, and they start working sooner with less of a chance of rejection.

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