He can pee for the first time in 3 years

SINGAPORE - It's something that practically everyone takes for granted. But for little Bryan Liu, being able to urinate never felt so good.

Last Friday was the first time in almost three years that the six-year-old boy has been able to do this, thanks to his new kidney.

He made history on July 21 as the youngest recipient of a kidney donated by an altruistic living donor.

His mother, Madam Serene Ng, 38, told The New Paper: "He was so happy. He kept staring and he kept laughing. He couldn't believe it.

"He did that for a few hours. Every time he pees, he keeps smiling to himself."

Bryan was born with only one kidney, which failed by the time he was two.

When Madam Ng donated one of hers to him, it failed nine months later and had to be removed, leaving him with no kidney.

After that, he could no longer produce urine and had to undergo 10 hours of dialysis daily to stay alive.

But now, with his new kidney from an altruistic donor - 27-year-old Lin Dilun, an events consultant - Bryan can also drink up to three litres of water a day for the first time in about a year.

That is 10 times what he used to be able to drink when he had no kidney. During that time, he was only allowed to drink 300ml.

For a while last Friday, he was free of all the tubes attached to his body and he took his first shower since the day of the transplant, said Madam Ng.

"He was running, jumping and hopping around. He was so happy. You can tell by the sparkle in his eyes."

Kor Kor's kidney loves water

Kor Kor's kidney loves water

She said she also took him to the playground on the National University Hospital grounds.

"He is doing very well. In fact, he's eating well, sleeping well."

Bryan is now passing about six litres of urine a day, which is very good, said Madam Ng.

Renal physician Akira Wu, 62, said that the more urine produced, the better.

He said: "This means the transplanted kidney is working well. He must be drinking a lot. He's doing well. It's good news."

When a person can't accept a transplanted kidney, the kidney function is not good and the urine output is low, he said.

Initially, Bryan refused to drink up because it has been so long ago since he could finish more than a cup of water a day.

She said: "So we told him that kor kor's (big brother in Cantonese) kidney loves water. If he doesn't drink water, it would spoil. So he drank."

He drinks a cup of water - about 250ml - every hour on average. He is also on a drip.

Compared to the previous kidney transplant back in May 2008, Bryan is aware of what is going on.

Madam Ng said: "Now, he's older. You can tell that he knows what's happening. Last time (after she donated a kidney to him), he was still passing out urine because he still had a kidney in him. "So the difference now is greater."

Yesterday, The New Paper on Sunday revealed the identity of the altruistic donor.

Selfless act

Selfless act

After reading the report, Madam Ng said she can finally put a face to Bryan's guardian angel. She had not met or seen him before.

"He has a kind-looking face. A very average guy whom you would not notice on the street, unlike a celebrity," she said.

She said that she and her husband, Mr Victor Liu, 50, a telco group manager, had previously wondered about the motive behind the donor's act.

She said: "Frankly speaking, no one in the right mind would do that. Nobody is so selfless. Now I can finally understand why he did it."

Mr Lin told TNPS in an exclusive interview that it is logical to donate something he doesn't need now to someone who needs it.

He was earlier quoted as saying: "The crucial thing is, if I give it away, can I still survive? If yes, it's no loss to me. It makes perfect sense."

She can finally lay her mind to rest after knowing his reason for helping her son.

Touched and grateful, she said: "If someone is not sincere about helping Bryan, he would not have gone through two years of tests. This is really a kind soul."

She is also relieved to know that Mr Lin is recovering well.

Behind Mr Lin is his mother, who has been there for him every step of the way.

Grateful to donor's mum

Grateful to donor's mum

Madam Ng is also eternally grateful to her.

She said: "Without family support, he wouldn't be able to go through with the intention.

"She's a very good mother. Despite her son wanting to do something so insane, she still supports him. The mother is a very strong person as well.

"She really understands me. Some parents would not support this. For her to do so, she must be a very understanding person."

Bryan is not out of the woods yet - the BK virus, which caused the first transplanted kidney to fail, is something which Madam Ng is still concerned about.

She said: "Of course, the risk is there. We just have to take a step at a time. Unfortunately, there's still no cure for this virus (infection)."

Bryan has to remain in hospital for another two to four weeks.

When asked about the possibility of complications, Mr Lin said it's something that can't be helped.

He said: "There will be a bit of disappointment. But I know I've done my best to help this boy.

"If it happens, there's nothing we can do because I've done my best."

"He did that for a few hours. Every time he pees, he keeps smiling to himself."

- Madam Serene Ng, Bryan's mum, on her son's excitement about being able to urinate

chaihyn@sph.com.sg

 

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