Pensioner raises kidney disease awareness

Doreen McEwan with daughter Gillian Davies
Doreen McEwan with daughter Gillian Davies

A PENSIONER who had a kidney removed after medics discovered a tumour says she had a lucky escape and is now urging others to look out for health warning signs.

Sprightly Doreen McEwan, 79, was sent for an MRI scan in December last year after blood tests carried out by her doctor revealed some “strange” results.

Worryingly, a scan revealed that Doreen had a tumour in one of her kidneys and experts immediately set about checking it hadn’t spread anywhere else.

Luckily it hadn’t, and after surgery to remove the kidney Doreen was quickly feeling back to her very best.

The brave mum and retired florist is now urging people to be aware of kidney health, and to not fear getting checked out.

Her relieved daughter, Gillian Davies, 53, said she thinks her mum has been “really lucky.”

Gillian and Doreen are now both supporting the fundraising efforts of a town salon in support of Kidney Research UK.

Doreen, who lives in Zetland Road, Hartlepool, with her husband of 56 years, John, 81, a retired maintenance supervisor, said: “I’m just grateful the tumour was discovered before it was too late.

“Taking the kidney out completely removes the risk of anything like that returning.

“You can live completely normally with only one kidney, it hasn’t changed anything for me other than the fact I’m feeling a lot better.”

Daughter Gillian is encouraging people with any doubts about the health of their kidneys to go for a check up.

The retired schoolteacher, who lives in Ryehill Gardens with husband Malcolm, 53, said: “I think we have been lucky that the tumour was found early.

“I’m so grateful to the specialists and hopefully people will read this and if they have any doubts go for a check themselves.”

As a way of saying thanks and raising awareness of Kidney Research UK, Gillian, a mum of Jennifer, 24, donated various items to Poppy’s Hairdressing, in Victoria Road, Hartlepool.

Customers at the salon have been donating money for the past two weeks in support of the cause and giving themselves a chance of winning the prizes.

Tracy Bourne, salon manager, said: “We wanted to raise awareness of Kidney Research and we obviously knew what Gillian and Doreen had been through.

“Gillian has been incredibly generous and donated all of the prizes, we are extremely grateful and want to raise as much as possible for a brilliant cause.”