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Last Updated: Tuesday, 3 June, 2003, 10:45 GMT 11:45 UK
Lomu wants home treatment
All Blacks winger Jonah Lomu
Lomu was diagnosed with Nephrotic Syndrome in 1996
All Blacks winger Jonah Lomu is hoping to have kidney dialysis at home.

The 28-year-old started his treatment last week after his chronic kidney condition deteriorated.

Usually patients have to go to hospital several times a week for dialysis but Lomu's manager Phil Kingsley Jones revealed that the New Zealand winger was looking into the options of home treatment.

"It's a possibility, to save him having to go to hospital every day or every three days or whatever. It just makes sense if he can do it at home," said Kingsley Jones.

Doctors in New Zealand are expecting a rush from All Black fans who want to donate a kidney so that Lomu can eventually have a transplant.

Lomu has not played rugby since April, although he says he hopes to compete in this autumn's World Cup for the All Blacks.

There are suggestions the condition could end his career, and New Zealand journalist Nathan Mills says he expects some of his compatriots to step forward and offer their kidneys to ensure the legendary international can play again.

I knew the day had to eventually arrive when I had to go on the dialysis machine
Jonah Lomu

"There are some pretty ferociously one-eyed supporters of All Black rugby around New Zealand so it would not surprise me if a few came forward," he told BBC Radio Five Live.

"But, of course, the surgeons have to ensure that the donor is making a sound decision, so that may be a factor."

Transplants have proven very effective at helping players with kidney problems come off dialysis - but doctors are split over whether such treatment would save Lomu's career.

Some fear a transplanted kidney would be susceptible to serious damage if subjected to the sort of heavy punishment that the body takes in international rugby.

Lomu insists he can play at the top level once again.

"My dream has always been to wear the All Blacks shirt - and my dream hasn't changed. I am doing everything I can to get back into top form ... you must have a dream," he said.

He needs treatment three times a week for at least a month at the Auckland hospital before he can think about his playing future.

In a statement on his personal website, Lomu said: "I knew the day had to eventually arrive when I had to go on the dialysis machine but, still, it doesn't make it easier to accept.

He has undergone regular treatment since being diagnosed with a rare kidney condition, nephrotic syndrome, at the end of 1996.




SEE ALSO
Lomu career in jeopardy
02 Apr 03  |  Internationals

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