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'Nothing short of a miracle': Irish CF campaigner on recovery after double lung transplant

Orla Tinsley told RTÉ’s Six One News that she feels like a “new woman”.
Apr 14th 2018, 1:16 PM 18,081 14

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CYSTIC FIBROSIS CAMPAIGNER Orla Tinsley has said she feels like a “new woman” as she continues to recover from a double lung transplant in the US.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Six One News, the Irish woman described her transformation as “nothing short of a miracle” and that she has strength she didn’t have before.

The journalist and Cystic Fibrosis activist has long campaigned for more awareness about the condition which affects the lungs and digestive system.

She has been on the waiting list for a double lung transplant since she suffered respiratory failure in 2016. She had previously been called six times about potential transplant but, on the seventh occasion, she successfully received the transplant just before Christmas in 2017.

She said: “It’s like being a teenager again. I have so much strength, it’s so amazing. I didn’t realise how much I’d lost because I’d lost it over a period of time.”

Tinsley said that she can now focus better and read faster, and is even doing yoga three times a week to help her body recover from the double transplant.

It’s phenomenal. I found myself walking tin the park with my mam the other day and I had to stop. I was overwhelmed. I wasn’t getting tired or breathless which was a normal occurrence over the last couple of years.

The campaigner was full of praise for the person, who was dying at the time, who made the decision to donate their lungs to her.

“I was getting emotional because I was thinking of my donor and their sacrifice and their generosity and their forward thinking to have that conversation with their family,” she said.

When tragically, they died, they gave me life. It’s the greatest gift someone can give to somebody else.

Tinsley closed with a passionate call for others to consider organ donation.

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Sean Murray

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