Rosie marks transplant anniversary with gift

Rosie's godaughter Fiorella, transplant nurse Lisa MacDonald & Rosie Neath
Rosie's godaughter Fiorella, transplant nurse Lisa MacDonald & Rosie Neath
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A Blackpool woman celebrated the first anniversary of her life-saving organ transplant by raising money to help ensure others can get the same treatment.

Rosie Neath underwent eight hours of surgery for a double lung transplant on May 7 last year at the University Hospital of South Manchester.

Since then, the 28-year-old former pupil of Collegiate School (now Aspire Academy), has been able to start living a normal life again.

She said: “I wouldn’t be here today without my donor and it is a big thing to get to the first year anniversary.

“So I wanted to mark it with something special and felt that should include raising money and awareness.

“I have been back in hospital recently due to some issues with rejection, and a chest infection, but everything is ok now.

“Because of the transplant I am able to live a normal life again – things like taking the dog for a walk, going shopping and going on holiday.

“None of these would have been possible without my donor.”

Rosie, a former NHS worker who lives near Poulton, suffers from Cystic Fibrosis and before her operation was being kept alive by a machine after her own lungs failed leaving her unable to breathe unaided.

She was deteriorating fast before doctors identified suitable donor organs.

Because of the severity of her situation, Rosie was made a priority for a transplant and only had to wait 17 days for a pair of lungs to be identified as a match, although some patients can wait up to two years.

Her operation, carried out by consultant cardiac surgeon Mr Rajamiyer Venkateswaran, was one of only around 30 similar operations which are performed by the NHS each year.

Following surgery she spent a week in intensive care but 20 days later, could breathe again on her own.

Although not yet medically cleared for a return to work, life has been getting back to normal, including going on holiday to Disneyland Paris last Christmas.

She said: “I am trying to raise awareness about organ donation, and my picture is on a Blackpool tram appealing for people to join the donor list.

“May is also Cystic Fibrosis month so I am keen also to highlight that.”

Rosie invited 100 people including family, friends and people from the hospital where she was treated, to a celebration party held at Cleveleys Masonic Hall on Saturday.

She hopes to have raised at least £1,000 for the Manchester Adult Cystic Fibrosis Unit Pearce Ward and New Start, which is the transplant charity.

A donation of £400 was also made which had been raised from the poems of Blackpool resident Stan Holgate who died of lung cancer earlier this year.

To find out more about organ donations go to www.organdonation.nhs.uk or call 0300 123 23 23.