Health, Life

Kidney swap in Turkey offers new life to 2 Ukrainians

Coming from Ukraine, Valeriy Horobets, Viacheslav Shcherbyna undergo paired kidney exchange surgery in Istanbul

Kidney swap in Turkey offers new life to 2 Ukrainians


Two Ukrainian citizens welcomed their new lives in Turkey after a cross-kidney transplant surgery in Istanbul.

Valeriy Horobets crossed his path with Viacheslav Shcherbyna at an international hospital in Istanbul.

Suffering from kidney failure, both were seeking a treatment in Turkey.

Horobets, 47, was diagnosed with diabetes in his twenties and weak medication became an obstacle in taking his illness under control.

He experienced negative effects of the diabetes; suffering kidney failure at first, Horobets later lost his eyesight. The illness also cost him his job and marriage.

His fate changed when his friend Roman Petrash told him that he would donate his kidney to Horobets and they applied to Medicana International Istanbul Hospital after some research.

Meanwhile, Shcherbyna also applied to the same hospital for transplantation, as his mother-in-law Hanna Knukova prepared to donate her kidney to him.

However, the examinations of both recipients and donors revealed that the two Ukrainians could not get kidneys from their donors due to incompatibility.

Following some additional tests, the cross-kidney transplantation became a hope for both.

Horobets and Shcherbyna -- along with their donors -- underwent simultaneous surgeries for the cross-transplantation.

Now, they are getting ready to enjoy the healthy life.

‘If it wasn’t for this place, I would never get transplantation’

Full of excitement for regaining his health, Horobets voiced gratitude for having the transplantation in Turkey.

“If it were not for this place, maybe I would never get transplantation,” he told Anadolu Agency.

“I'm very hopeful that I'll start work again in my new life. My biggest hope is to be able to work again.”

“In Ukraine, I was frankly afraid to have a kidney transplant. I wanted to have my first and last transplantation in Turkey as I thought it would be more successful,” he added.

Shcherbyna, also suffering from the illness for 13 years, said he was very happy to hear that his mother-in-law was ready to give her kidney to him.

“I want to say this; If I have to become a donor for someone else, I don’t know if I’d be as confident as her,” he added.

‘Foreign patients seeking for health in Turkey’

Murat Tuncer, a medical professor at the hospital, said such cases are source of pride for Turkish medicine.

“In the past, we used to send our patients abroad for treatment, but now foreign patients come to Turkey to seek for health,” Tuncer said.

Stressing the importance of organ donation, he called on Turkish people to be more aware of it.

Another medical professor at the hospital, Muzaffer Sariyar said Turkey performed serious development in the medical field since 1975, when the first transplantation was done.

“Not only these patients, but many foreigners are coming to our country to regain their health,” Sariyar said.

Reporting by Hatice Senses Kurukiz:Writing by Sena Guler

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