Belfast Telegraph

Girl recovers from liver transplant

A teenager who missed a liver transplant operation earlier this summer because of botched transport plans is recovering after undergoing surgery in London.

Meadhbh McGivern, 14, was flown out in the middle of the night by the Air Corps after being offered a viable organ for the second time in three months.

It is understood the operation at King's College Hospital lasted around 12 hours, about four hours longer than expected by father Joe and wife Assumpta.

A spokesman for the hospital said Meadhbh was in a stable condition in the paediatric intensive care unit.

"As expected, it was a difficult and challenging operation," he said. "However the liver has now been transplanted and Meadhbh is out of theatre."

Meadhbh's condition, a progressive liver disease, worsened last week and she was in Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin, Dublin, for nine days.

The family, from Ballinamore, Leitrim, were notified about the viable organ shortly after 10pm on Wednesday and were transferred to London Heathrow on the Learjet, arriving at King's at 1.30am.

Mr McGivern, who waited at the hospital with his wife, said: "When the call came through last night we thought 'Is it for real?' Meadhbh was delighted and overjoyed. Until she got on the plane she was not really believing that she'd make it. Once we were in the air then she knew."

Meadhbh is expected to remain in King's for up to six weeks.

Meadhbh missed the offer of a liver transplant in July after a breakdown in communications in arranging rapid air ambulance transport.

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