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Oklahoma teen awaiting kidney transplant is happy to be back in the classroom

Oklahoma City teenager can take some classes online while receiving kidney dialysis treatment.
by Bryan Painter Published: August 26, 2012

That wouldn't be particularly easy considering the time taken up by the dialysis treatment.

Dialysis is a treatment for people whose kidneys aren't functioning properly. It filters a patient's blood, removing harmful waste, extra salt and water, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

Jennifer and other dialysis treatment patients at Children's are typically at the hospital Monday, Wednesday and Friday, three to three and a half hours each day.

But while taking the treatment, there was some time available. That's where the online courses come in.

“It is a blessing because I know she couldn't be a full-time student,” Patricia said. “She not only has the dialysis on the three afternoons, she gets really, really tired after treatment. This way she can work on those classes while she's sitting here at the hospital.”

The difference

“I didn't like sitting at home, not doing anything,” Jennifer said. “Our school is fun because we get to do projects as a group. I like being around other people.”

She's a lot closer to the Jennifer pre-August 2009, her mother said.

Jennifer will pull up on her laptop computer several recent drawings, including that of an angel.

“I had to get back to school because I want to go on and graduate and go to college and study art,” Jennifer said.

The differences in Jennifer between a year ago and now are very noticeable to her mother.

“Every day to her is a chance to see something beautiful,” Patricia said, “whether it's the sunrise or the colors in the sky.

“She actually knows that she's going to live.”

by Bryan Painter
Assistant Local Editor
Bryan Painter, assistant local editor, has 31 years’ experience in journalism, including 22 years with the state's largest newspaper, The Oklahoman. In that time he has covered such events as the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah...
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Every day to her is a chance to see something beautiful, whether it's the sunrise or the colors in the sky. She actually knows that she's going to live.”

Patricia Ochoa

Mother of Jennifer Ochoa


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