Give a great gift

Published 9:25 pm Thursday, January 28, 2016

Trenton Bishop didn’t ask to get Hepatitis C. He was simply doing his duty, performing chest compressions as a Navy corpsman on an admiral who went into cardiac arrest at Bethesda Naval Medical Center.

But now he is asking something of the community that he helped protect as a member of the military. He needs a new liver — and fast.

The virus borne by the dirty needle he got stuck with that day lay dormant for 32 years. But it attacked his body with a vengeance beginning in 2012.

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First, the discovery was made that about 80 percent of his liver was dead. In December 2014, he suffered stroke-like symptoms caused by damage to the brain.

A medication that’s usually effective against Hepatitis C didn’t work, and Bishop is now sicker than he was before. He’s been taken off the transplant list because some false test readings made his case appear not as serious.

But it’s quite serious. Blood is backing up throughout his body because it cannot get into his liver. Doctors are worried about an aneurysm. Bishop has to keep to an extraordinarily strict diet to prevent buildup of bad things in his blood that the liver would normally filter out.

Bishop is seeking a willing donor with O+ or O- blood, 18 to 50 years old and in good to excellent health.

Don’t look at it as losing a liver; look at it as gaining a friend. Plus, the part of your liver that’s removed will grow back in about a year’s time. The part of your liver transplanted into Bishop will take a little longer to grow into a full liver for him.

A living organ donation as one of the greatest gifts a person can give someone else. If you’re eligible and able, please think about giving. If you’re not able, Bishop could use monetary donations to help cover medical expenses for himself and the donor.

To donate money or send Bishop a private message about willingness to donate a liver, visit Sending a message without a donation can be accomplished by going through the steps to donate, entering an amount of $0 and writing a comment after clicking “Hide name and comment from everyone but the organizer.”