My solution was running
Facing the imminent prospect of dialysis, Andy knew he needed to make lifestyle changes to slow his decline for as long as possible and get himself healthy enough to receive a transplant.
He says: “My solution was exercise and running. I then started to eat a bit better, go to bed a bit earlier, and it all just fell into place. Once I had the will to do it, I set myself little targets and stuck to them. I lost the best part of four stone and was just under 12 and a half stone at my lowest weight.”
In June 2019, despite nearing end stage kidney disease, Andy completed the Chester half marathon, raising more than £2,000 for our work at Kidney Research UK. It was an amazing achievement and his healthier lifestyle helped to prolong his kidney function until October 2021, when dialysis became necessary. By this time, Andy had lost enough weight to be eligible for a transplant.
Andy needed automated peritoneal dialysis (APD) for just over a year, but in November 2022 he finally received the transplant he’d been striving for. After a rollercoaster of being called three times for transplants did not go ahead, Andy received his new kidney via the NHS paired donation scheme (PPD). Andy’s wife was not a direct match, and so they found a compatible transplant for Andy as part of the scheme in which she also donated her kidney to someone she hadn’t met.