A 52-year-old man who underwent a lifesaving operation in 2007 has appealed for more people to sign up to the donor registry after he was freed from the daily injections of type 1 diabetes.
Russell Macmillan (pictured), based in East Renfrewshire, Scotland, received a pancreas and kidney transplant 10 years ago having been in extremely poor health.
Mr Macmillan is registered blind, and at the age of 40 his kidney function had dropped to eight per cent and he had hypo unawareness, leaving him vulnerable for severe hypoglycemia.
Mr Macmillan was also deemed at risk of heart attack and stroke, and it was for this reason that he was listed for a double pancreas and kidney transplant.
Mr Macmillan was aged 42 at the time of transplant, which has since enabled him to be free from daily insulin injections.
Those who receive pancreas transplants need to take immunosuppressive drugs to prevent type 1 diabetes from attacking the new pancreas.
‘I wanted to give something back’
He went on to set up a local charity called East Renfrewshire Good Causes (ERGC), which has helped over 1,615 people by distributing £293,686 worth of goods and services.
“I’m only alive today thanks to the transplanted organs, and I really wanted to give something back, to honour the memory of my donor, and to encourage other people to sign up to the organ donor register,” Mr Macmillan told The Scotsman.
“I hope the achievements of those two organs living on inside men, go some way for me to thank God, and honour the memory of the organ donor, whilst giving me a second gift of life.
“To be totally cured of my insulin-dependent diabetes is an incredible experience. I appeal for everyone to sign up to the donor register today.”
Picture: The Scotsman

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