Kidney donor in £14m claim speaks of fears for future


A man claiming £14m in damages after he nearly died during surgery to donate a kidney to his father has told the High Court of his fears for the future.

The 39-year-old, who can only be named as XYZ, was operated on in 2008 at the Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth.

He suffered "catastrophic" injuries to his other kidney and, in turn, needed a kidney transplant from his sister.

XYZ told the court of his "absolute certain knowledge" that he was going to lose the organ within 20 years.

'Loss of earnings'

Judge Mr Justice Spencer said Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust had already admitted liability on the basis that the surgeon, who is the subject of proceedings before the General Medical Council, was not only negligent but to a degree reckless.

The four-day hearing is to assess compensation because the trust disputes some of the man's claims - including substantial amounts for future loss of earnings and future medical expenses.

The court has heard XYZ suffered irreversible left kidney failure during the negligently performed operation and subsequently spent a year receiving dialysis treatment before he had the transplant from his sister.

He told the court the dialysis had been a "terrible experience" and he had a great fear of catching swine flu, viruses and bacteria.

"While in hospital, two girls around my age both died on dialysis, and I know that is my future," he said.

Live 'in a bubble'

It made him "extremely angry" that his two young children should grow up knowing they might have to donate a kidney if they wanted him to live to be a grandfather, he said.

He added it seemed "terribly unfair" he should have to live "in a bubble" in a gleamingly clean home - constantly arguing with his wife over whether dogs were allowed in the house - and having to avoid sunlight, certain foods and restaurants.

The surgery had also led to nerve damage to his foot and an injury to his bladder, while the side-effects of his medication had led to weight gain, high blood pressure and cholesterol, excessive hair growth and spots, he said.

Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC, for the claimant, said as a result of donating his kidney, XYZ's life had been shortened by about 10 years.

The hearing continues.

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