The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Lomu says no to kidney transplant

Wellington: All Blacks winger Jonah Lomu has decided to delay a kidney transplant in order to continue playing rugby, his wife said here.

Fiona Lomu told a New Zealand magazine her husband was willing to undergo dialysis up to 10 hours a day in lieu of a transplant in order to pursue his rugby career.

A transplant would remove the need for dialysis, but the possibility of damage to a replacement kidney would likely force Lomuís retirement. Fiona said Jonah, 28, has ďgot plenty of years left to play.Ē

Her comments Monday appeared at the same time as an announcement that Lomu had cancelled speaking engagements in Britain because of detrimental side effects of his illness.

Lomuís manager, Phil Kingsley-Jones, said nerve damage to Lomuís feet, caused by dialysis, had left him barely able to walk.

Fiona said Jonah had changed his dialysis regime several times since it began in June to minimise the side effects. Dialysis patients often experienced numbness and even paralysis in the feet and legs.

Lomu suffered full kidney failure in June as a result of the rare illness nephritis.

He played part of a pre-season match for his Wellington provincial side in August but has since been sidelined with his recurring problems with calf and foot.

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