Two Syracuse families were joined together forever through a life-saving live kidney donation on Nov. 30 when Dan Masters gave one of his kidneys to Joe Reisdorff.  Both men are doing well and recovering as expected.
Reisdorff was diagnosed with stage three kidney disease (Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis) in 2008.  His kidneys only functioned at 45 percent at that time due to scarring that prevented proper filtering.
Over the last eight years, with treatment, the progression slowed. However, his kidneys had recently begun a rapid decline, and Reisdorff has been on dialysis for the last several months.
In the last year, four different relatives were tested to donate, but they were not deemed a suitable match.
Reisdorff is an agronomist at Midwest Farmers Coop; Masters farms (in addition to his work as a radiology technologist at Community Memorial Hospital).  Their wives, Christa Reisdorff and Liza Masters, are friends through Herbalife and taking fitness classes together.  Christa works as a lab tech at CMH and is also in nursing school.  
Liza works at Sutton Ryan Dermatology.
Though Joe and Dan had known each other for close to 20 years, Dan only learned of the need a few short months ago when he saw the facebook page about Joey’s Kidney Journey.
Both families attend St. Paulinus Catholic Church in Syracuse.  Masters said, “I had no idea anything was going on until I came across the facebook post, and I think it was probably that next weekend when we were at church… They were sitting up in front of us a pew or two, and I was thinking about ‘What if it was me? What if?’  So, I told Liza I wanted to get tested, and she was all for it!”
The process involved several different tests and appointments to evaluate the suitability of Masters as a donor.  Because of the position of the kidney, the donation process always involves taking the donor’s left kidney.  
Reisdorff’s dad was previously ruled out as a donor because he had three arteries to his left kidney (which wouldn’t be compatible with Joey’s typical two).  Masters had three arteries to his right kidney, but his left had the needed two.  The very thing that ruled out one donor on the left side actually made Masters an even better match because it meant that his right kidney would be even more able to function alone for him after the donation.
The families were notified Sept. 22 that Masters was a match, and they decided to wait until the end of November to complete harvest and the Thanksgiving holiday before proceeding with the surgery.
Dan and Liza’s kids (six year old Calla, three year old Chloe, and especially nine year old Camden) had a lot of questions and were worried about Dan having the surgery.  Joe and Christa’s three year old son Truman already knew that daddy needed a new kidney, and he was more excited than anything else.
Surgery went as expected, and though the first week was hard, both are moving around and doing really well (though still on lifting restrictions for several more weeks).  
Reisdorff still has his original kidneys which will die off eventually because they’re not being used.
His kidney function is better than it ever has been.
 The disease that destroyed his kidneys is treatable when found early enough, and doctors do not expect him to have the same problems now with a good kidney and frequent monitoring and treatment if needed.
Reisdorff is still taking a lot of anti-rejection medications and they are working to regulate his medications to the most effective doses.  He is more susceptible to illnesses right now because of these medications.
Both families are thankful that everything went as expected, and they have felt truly blessed by the continued support of their friends, families, and the Syracuse community.