Mum of teenage boy in desperate need of kidney donor 'blown away' by generous support

The mum of a teenage boy suffering from a life-threatening kidney disease says she has been 'blown away' by the support they have received since they appealed for a donor online.

By Wes Holmes
Sunday, 27th February 2022, 4:03 pm

Ami McLennan, 45, from Lancaster, made a public appeal for a kidney donor for her son, William Verden, 17, who is currently at the centre of a medical treatment dispute as doctors say a transplant is not in his 'best interests'.

This is because the teenager, who has autism, would need to be sedated and ventilated for possibly up to six weeks to ensure that he complies with the interventions following the operation.

But Ms McLennan says a transplant is a “feasible option”.

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William Verden

Mrs Justice Arbuthnot is scheduled to oversee a hearing in Liverpool next week in the Court of Protection to decide what treatment options are best for William.

Liz Davis, a lawyer based at firm Irwin Mitchell, representing Ms McLennan, said: “She has been blown away by the messages of support she has received from the public and those who have come forward to register an interest in becoming a donor.”

However, lawyers representing the Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, have asked Mrs Justice Arbuthnot to consider the opinions of the Manchester Children's Hospital specialists involved in William's care.

The judge heard that the teenager suffers from steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome, a genetic condition which causes patients to resist life-saving steroid therapy.

She said: “The Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust has sought declarations in relation to William’s capacity and best interests regarding his treatment options,” Mrs Justice Arbuthnot said.

“The trust’s position… is that they oppose transplant for a series of the reasons they have set out, essentially that William will require sedation and ventilation for possibly up to six weeks to ensure that he complies with the interventions post-operatively and that the prospect of recurrence of the steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome is high, about 80 per cent.

“His mother opposes the trust’s application.

“She relies on expert evidence which points more towards a 50% chance of recurrence and the same expert says that a transplant is a feasible option and gives to William a reasonable potential for a good long-term outcome.”

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