Double organ transplant patient selected for World Transplant Games
A double organ transplant patient has battled back from the brink of death to win selection to the 2013 World Transplant Games in South Africa.
Five years ago Dino Maroudias took his wife, Justine and four children to Disneyland on what he thought would be a last holiday with his family. Diabetic since the age of 18 he had been told a year earlier that his kidneys were failing.
“I have always tried to live my life to the full,” the 46-year-old from Lilley said.
“Playing football and tennis, taking on challenging jobs in sales and running my own business – until that is, I went for a routine check with the hospital for my diabetes.”
The doctors diagnosed rising creatinine levels in Mr Maroudias’ blood and for the next year he received weekly treatments. “I was feeling extremely tired and had lost about two-and-a-half stone. I thought I was going to die,” he said.
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After the family trip to America he went straight back into hospital.
“I was in greater need of dialysis, which I had been putting off, so I finally elected for CAPD treatment which really did not work for me and I then became quite unwell, trying to hang onto the life I used to have.”
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It was at this point that his brother Andy offered one of his kidneys.
“No words could describe how I felt about this unselfish act. I mean, what do you say to someone who can do such a thing? But soon after the news I fell gravely ill and was rushed to Lister with pneumonia and fluid on my lungs. I was delirious. The doctor told me afterwards how serious it actually was.”
Mr Maroudias recovered to have the kidney transplant in June 2007. His brother’s organ was a perfect match, enabling him to go from “strength to strength”. So much so that in 2009 he competed in his first World Transplant Games in Australia and again in Sweden two years later, competing in tennis, table tennis, badminton and team volleyball.
In 2011, he had a second transplant of a donor pancreas – a complicated process and recovery, but one which has cut his diabetes to a mild form controlled by tablets.
“I am feeling so much better and an awful lot fitter,” he said.
“I only have praise and gratitude to the hospitals and their care and those who donate organs. It has been one hell of a roller coaster, however I’m back and extremely looking forward to South Africa to represent the UK.
“The transplant sport is one of the single most important factors in my life as it gives me the opportunity to play, compete and enjoy sport and get fitter and fitter. I’m really hopeful of achieving a medal in South Africa.”
Like all the athletes competing at the games, Mr Maroudias must raise the money to compete. To support him go to www.justgiving.com/DinoMaroudias