Setback for brave transplant teen

West Melton's Maddie Collins spent the week in Starship Hospital after a biopsy showed she was...
West Melton's Maddie Collins spent the week in Starship Hospital after a biopsy showed she was rejecting her new kidney.
West Melton teenager Maddie Collins is recovering after signs of kidney rejection left her in Starship Hospital for a week.

The 15-year-old suffers from kidney disease, nephrotic syndrome, and underwent her second kidney transplant in January last year.

A recent blood test showed Maddie’s creatinine levels had spiked to 330.

Typically, 60-80 is normal and Maddie’s normal is about 170.

Maddie’s mother, Sarah Manson-Collins said this began a whirlwind of scans, needles and tests that landed them in Starship Hospital.

“We got rushed into Christchurch Hospital with some IV fluids hoping that would resolve it but it didn’t. We were then flown to Starship where she had a kidney biopsy that showed she had another bout of rejection,” she said.

Maddie then started a course of high dose steroids which she has since responded to.

She and her mother flew back to Christchurch last week.

Mrs Manson-Collins said it will be another week before they know if any permanent damage has been done to the kidney.

“It just shows us how vulnerable and fragile her health is. When she’s well then she’s well but when she’s sick she is really sick.

“As of right now, she is doing okay. She’s pretty exhausted from the side effects of such a high dose steroids,” she said.

In spite of the health-scare, Maddie competed in the Canterbury Dressage Spring Series equestrian competition at McLeans Island on Sunday, winning the intro ponies division.

“As a mum, it’s really delightful to watch her compete because riding is Maddie’s lifeline. I know that she’s ready to tackle anything and can keep going when she is determined to ride,” she said.

Maddie received what was termed a ‘miracle’ second kidney transplant in January last year after being told there was only a two per cent chance of finding a match in New Zealand.

The first was donated six years ago by her father Adam but her body rejected it.

There have been a series of ups and downs since the transplant.

Maddie ended up in Starship Hospital in July this year with signs that her new kidney was failing.

She was struggling with declining function and high blood pressure.

The pair spent a week at Ronald McDonald House Grafton Mews in Auckland as Maddie was treated.

The family didn’t expect to be able to find the second kidney match in New Zealand.

They were planning a trip to The John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, United States, to find one when they were notified an organ had been found.


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