An orthopaedic senior matron at the Royal Free Hospital is planning to donate one of his kidneys to a family friend in an act of extraordinary generosity.

Craig Binch, 36, will have his right kidney removed next month at Guy’s Hospital in London; the kidney will then be air-lifted to Nottingham where it will be transplanted into his mother’s friend.

Craig said: “The friend was diagnosed with polycystic kidneys six or seven years ago. Since then, her kidneys have gradually become worse and it has now got to the point that, without a donated kidney, she would need dialysis.

Craig then decided he wanted to help and was tested to see if he was a match.

“They gave me the full MOT,” he said. “I had an ultrasound to check the size of the kidney and a CT scan to check the anatomy. 

“The ultrasound was fine, however the CT scan found that I had abnormal anatomy – I have an additional vein on my right kidney and an additional artery on the left kidney.”

The surgeons have said that, although there was more of a risk because of the additional vein, they were happy to carry out the operation and Craig will go under the knife later this month.

He said: “When I have told people they have found it peculiar. But it is a good feeling to help someone and I know that my life will soon be back to normal. I am young and I couldn’t think of a reason why I shouldn’t. The medical staff will look after me; they will make sure I am fine.”

The Royal Free Hospital is one of the UK’s largest centres for kidney and liver transplantation and we carry out 150 kidney and 90 liver transplants every year. However, there are not enough organs to go around and every day three people in the UK die waiting for a donor organ.

Next week is National Transplant Week (7-13 September). If you join the organ donor register, one day your organs could help someone else to live. Go to the NHS Blood and Transplant website or call 0300 123 23 23 to sign up to the register.


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About the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

The Royal Free began as a pioneering organisation and continues to play a leading role in the care of patients. Our mission is to provide world class expertise and local care. In the 21st century, the Royal Free London continues to lead improvements in healthcare.

The Royal Free London attracts patients from across the country and beyond to its specialist services in liver, kidney and bone marrow transplantation, haemophilia, renal, HIV, infectious diseases, plastic surgery, immunology, vascular surgery, cardiology, amyloidosis and scleroderma and we are a member of the academic health science partnership UCLPartners.

In July 2014 Barnet Hospital and Chase Farm Hospital became part of the Royal Free London.

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