Dr. Karin Hehenberger and Lyfebulb Recognize World Kidney Day

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Lyfebulb Founder Dr. Hehenberger Reflects On Her Own Kidney Transplant And Encourages Other At-Risk Individuals to be Tested

In commemoration of World Kidney Day, Dr. Karin Hehenberger and Lyfebulb, a life sciences and living empowerment platform that strives to educate, inspire, and finance cures so individuals with diabetes and other chronic conditions can lead better lives, join the global community to recognize the more than 20 million Americans with chronic kidney disease. Dr. Hehenberger and Lyfebulb encourage individuals to identify if they are at a high risk for kidney disease and see their doctor for a kidney function test.

Hehenberger, MD, PhD, Founder of Lyfebulb and a health and wellness expert, received a kidney transplant five years ago in March 2009, coinciding almost to the day with World Kidney Day. After being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at age 17 and living with the disease for 20 years, Hehenberger was told that her kidneys were so damaged that she needed to go on dialysis immediately or receive a new organ from a donor. Her father was a match and in the proper health to withstand surgery. A short time later, Hehenberger received the transplant that saved her life.

“Being told I must receive a new kidney or immediately be put on dialysis was a frightening moment,” said Hehenberger. “You can have the early stages of kidney disease and be asymptomatic. Diabetes is one of the leading causes of kidney disease, but there are many factors that will put an individual at risk of developing kidney problems, and early detection and intervention are crucial to saving lives.”

As noted in the 2013 United States Renal Data System (USRDS), approximately 34 percent of patients with diabetes had survived five years after initiation of hemodialysis and only 10 percent were alive after 10 years. During those years, the person has to go to a dialysis center three times per week for four hours of treatment each time.

Risk factors for kidney disease include high blood pressure, diabetes, a family history of kidney disease, obesity, smoking, over 50 years of age and being of a certain ethnic background. Individuals who are high-risk should regularly see a doctor for a simple kidney function test.

“With kidney destructive diseases such as diabetes on the rise, I created Lyfebulb with the goal to connect people and open discussions on life threatening issues,” said Hehenberger. “We may not have a cure for chronic kidney disease yet, but Lyfebulb is a vehicle to find near-term solutions.”

Lyfebulb was founded to create a dynamic on and offline community that builds awareness about improving health among the general population, identifies next-generation therapies and cures, and secures financing for promising opportunities. Through a television show, upcoming book, consulting services and a dining series, Lyfebulb’s platform will shine a light on the issues afflicting individuals with diabetes and other diseases and create support and advocacy for new treatments, so that those diagnosed with such conditions can lead full and productive lives.

Since being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at age 17, Dr. Hehenberger has developed more than 15 years of experience in the healthcare industry. She entered into the field after obtaining M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden and conducting post-doctoral work as a JDRF fellow at the Joslin Diabetes Center at Harvard Medical School. After undergoing two organ transplants due to the complications of T1D, her dedication to the field has grown even stronger, leading her to create Lyfebulb.

For more information, please visit http://www.lyfebulb.com.

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Shay Pantano
Rubenstein PR
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