Teenager recovers from transplant double

A teenager battling a rare condition was recovering in hospital at the weekend after becoming only the second child in the UK to undergo a major transplant operation on two separate occasions.

A teenager battling a rare condition was recovering in hospital at the weekend after becoming only the second child in the UK to undergo a major transplant operation on two separate occasions.

Will Tweedy, 14, has had pioneering surgery for the second time to have his liver, colon, small bowel, pancreas and parts of his stomach replaced.

The teenager's bravery has astounded his family and doctors, who say it is only the second in the UK a child has had to have his liver and bowel replaced twice.

The youngster, from Mile End Road, Norwich, was born with a rare condition which means his body rejects solid foods and he has to be fed through a tube.

He first received a new bowel and liver in 2004 and started making steady progress, learning to eat for the first time in his life.

However, he was left fighting for his life after his body rejected the new organs and last month underwent a multiple organ transplant at Birmingham's Children's Hospital.

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His mother Lorraine said: “It has been a really tough time. Will is in his fifth week of recovery and it is very, very slow.

“It was a major operation and so far we are taking it day by day. Will is very poorly and he is frustrated, but we still see a smile from him.

“He has been through so much but he still tries to stay positive. It is harder than last time though because he has had more organs transplanted.”

Football-mad Will has had a difficult year so far and only been able to spend eight days at his home.

Prior to the transplant he was an inpatient at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, where he spent most of his time.

He has been so poorly he has not been able to attend the City of Norwich School, where he is a pupil.

The Norwich City fan's condition is known as intestinal pseudo-obstruction and it means he rejects solid food. Weeks after he was born he had a tube inserted into his nose to enable him to take in liquefied food and was fed through this until his first transplant two years ago.

The Tweedy family, which also includes television engineer dad Kevin 48, older brother Ben 21, Sophie 18, and Josh, aged nine, have been regularly travelling to the hospital to spend as much time with Will as possible.

“It has completely taken over our lives,” Mrs Tweedy said. “But we are remaining hopeful and are a really close family. Will is doing well because it is only the second time this type of operation has been carried out in this country.”