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Moms’ kidneys save kids

Nayara Rehman (left) and Megha Banerjee

Two girls from either side of the Indo-Bangla border were gifted a new lease of life by their mothers, who donated their kidneys for their daughters suffering from renal failure.

Megha Banerjee, 7, of Bangur Avenue in Calcutta, and Nayara Rehman, 6, from Dhaka had to stop going to school after renal complications left them sapped of all energy.

Their health has improved after the transplants and now the girls are looking forward to rejoining their friends in school.

The girls do not look their age, as their physical growth was impaired by the renal complications.

“My daughter weighed just 13.5kg while others her age weigh 24kg or so. She would get tired after the least exertion and throw up often. Her low body weight made the transplant risky. When doctors finally agreed, I volunteered to donate a kidney at once,” said Megha’s mother, Ruma Banerjee.

Nayara’s mother Mehbuba Joarder, a radiologist at a private clinic in Dhaka, said the counselling at Fortis Hospitals in Anandapur, where the transplants took place, had helped a lot. Nayara had been undergoing dialysis for three years.

“The renal complications pushed up her blood pressure so much that she suffered from temporary blindness last year. After the condition was treated, doctors decided to go for the transplant,” said Joarder.

Megha’s underwent surgery six months ago Nayara four months ago. Both are doing well. The surgery was difficult because the mothers’ kidneys were “double the size of the girls”.

“It’s difficult to place the kidney of a grown-up in a small abdomen. Also modifications had to be done to blood vessels. The procedure took six hours for each girl,” said Shivaji Basu, chief urologist and renal transplant surgeon at Fortis, who led the team of surgeons that performed the operations.