Donated kidney still going strong for Cheltenham gran 38 years on

Western Daily Press | Laura Elvin

A great-grandmother has become one of the longest-surviving transplant patients in the country after 38 years living with a donated kidney.

Valerie Coombes, 80, was told her transplanted organ would probably last just five years when she had the then-revolutionary operation in 1978.

But Mrs Coombes is still going strong and celebrated her 80th birthday this year by fundraising for the hospital where she had the transplant decades earlier.

The housewife puts her long-lasting organ down to the love of her family, including husband Peter, 84, who cared for her following the operation.

The great-grandmother of four, from Cheltenham, said: "I didn't think I would reach the age of 40 so to reach the milestone of 80 is remarkable.

"I can't say I'm the longest surviving patient but I think I'm one of them now.

"Doctors told my husband the kidney would last five years. Continue reading
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