Have you considered donating a kidney to save someones life?
Well, Catherine O’Brien did. Brave wife says she is donating a kidney to a stranger in order to repay the NHS for saving her husband’s life. Once she has had surgery and she donates her kidney, she will become a living donor next month. This whole story began when her husband Shaun found a cancerous lump on his neck in 2015. After following surgery and treatment in March, he was finally given the all-clear. Catherine believes ‘she is sharing a spare rather than losing one’. The beloved wife turned to her husband one day, after she had heard that another woman had become a living donor, and just thought “I could do that” Later Shaun’s wife contacted Salford Royal Hospital and her amazing story began.
Catherine says her husband was 100% with her on this roller coaster. She had supposed that he worried as it is a major operation however, she knew she was in the safe hands of the NHS and the operation is highly successful. Catherine said she was not concerned about problems which may occur as a result of having only one remaining kidney in future. She joked that she could get hit by a bus tomorrow all she is doing is providing the organ; the NHS are doing the hard work. Although she has never had surgery before the wife is super excited, as she knows from experience the impact it will have on someone and their family.
NHS reflect on the risks of donating a kidney:
- Blood clots
- Damage to major blood vessels
- Damage to organs near to the kidney
- Risk of damage to mental health if things do not work out as expected
- Slightly higher chance of a small increase in blood pressure or the amount of protein in urine as a result of having one kidney
- Overall risk of developing significant kidney disease in your remaining kidney after donation is very low, occurring in less than one in 200 (0.5%) donor
- Slightly increased risk of gestational hypertension or pre-eclampsia
- Ongoing fatigue and persistent pain have been reported by small numbers
However despite all these concerns donating a kidney may have, Catherine would be overjoyed if she could save someones life, like the NHS did her husbands. Statistics show that nearly 300 people died waiting for a kidney transplant last year, despite this hundreds of people have had their lives saved and transformed. Since changes to the law made this all possible a decade ago, NHS Blood and Transplant specialists’ know that more than 500 people have helped save the life of a stranger, by becoming a living kidney donor. Many are thankful for these heroes, they believe that with the help and support from the NHS more lives will be saved by a living donor today.