NxStage Medical, Inc.
At Home with Henning
By Laurie Vertuccio, NxStage Medical, Inc.
In December I had the pleasure of the spending a day with NxStage patient Henning. I knew Henning was special and had a great story to tell, so learning more about his will and determination on a personal level truly exceeded my expectations!
On a Tuesday morning, a couple of us NxStagers packed our bags, gassed up the truck and headed north to visit Henning at his home in Northern New England. He is a patient who not only suffers from kidney disease but also was born with spinal bifida and is an amputee.
We chatted with him about what it's like being on dialysis with the NxStage System One and living on a separate continent than his family. Since he resides in Denmark but travels frequently to and from the U.S. to visit his wife and two daughters, he needed to find a solution other than in-center dialysis in Denmark that would support his lifestyle. Without NxStage therapy, Henning would not have the opportunity to be home for the holidays with his family - truly a blessing for all.
Having the opportunity to casually sit and chat with Henning was so inspirational. You would think a person up against these odds would just hunker down and accept the cards he has been dealt - but not Henning.
At 47, he has traveled to four of the seven continents, skied the mountains of Colorado, went paragliding in Bulgaria and hiked the Pacific Northwest. Knowing that is a lot for someone with both legs and perfect health, I was even more impressed by his accomplishments.
What's incredible about Henning is that despite his disabilities, his parents instilled in him the message that he could do whatever he wanted to do. Thus, Henning traveled the world as a wheelchair racer, received his undergraduate degree, became a clinical and health psychologist, and now is applying to be sponsored for a PhD on home hemodialysis.
Henning is truly an inspiration by not letting his disabilities define him.
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