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Pewsham mum’s gift of life
9:20am Friday 16th August 2013 in News
Ten-year-old Owen Tomsett is making his mum proud at the British Transplant Games – a year after her kidney saved his life.
Before the transplant, the Charter School pupil, of Pewsham, Chippenham, spent four hours three times a week having dialysis at Bristol Children’s Hospital.
After the transplant he developed chicken pox, which is a danger to someone on anti-rejection drugs.
But just a couple of weeks after recovering from that, he will be sprinting 50 metres in the four-day Games in Sheffield that began yesterday, representing the hospital where he had his operation.
The operation was all the more agonising for mum Alison, 41, because she could not be with her son in his time of need. Before Owen was given her kidney it was removed from her at Southmead Hospital, three-and-a-half miles away.
But she said she too is reaping the rewards of giving up one of her kidneys last July.
She said: “Just a normal school day used to be tiring for Owen, he’d have to sleep when he got home. Sports day was a bit of an effort. But this year’s, when he came second in running, was amazing. Knowing how he was before, his energy now is so lovely to see. I’m pleased as punch.”
Owen, who likes James Bond, wrestling and Grand Prix racing, said: “I don’t like being poorly. I was scared.
“Afterwards I said to my mum ‘thank you very much and I love you’.”
He was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease in 2009 and had to go on dialysis last Easter after catching a virus.
Mrs Tomsett, who returned to work in Paprika gift shop in Borough Parade six weeks after her operation, said: “You’re watching your child deteriorate. He was going to outgrow his kidney function as he grew and all you could do was just wait for them to fail altogether. It was a foregone conclusion I would do it.
“It’s given him the best start, though it’s not going to last forever. It won’t be the last he will need to have in his lifetime. I’m hoping it lasts him until young adult life.”
Owen’s dad Nigel Tomsett, 48, a business development manager for Sterling Capital in Bath, said: “The fact that he can take part in the Games this year is a testament to the skills of the hospital staff and to the bravery of my wife, who has given Owen the gift of life.”
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