An autistic 16-year-old has begged doctors not to let him die after a decision was made to stop his life-saving dialysis treatment.
William Verden was diagnosed with a rare kidney disease two years ago and even a transplant is unlikely to help.
Medics say he should receive palliative care instead of continuing dialysis as an expert says his kidneys are ‘devastated’.
But the teenager’s furious mother Amy, 45, is said to be willing to launch a High Court challenge to keep William alive.
His situation is complicated by his attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism. William has interfered with his tube lines and sometimes needs restraining during dialysis.
William Verden’s (pictured) mother Amy (pictured) is said to be willing to launch a High Court challenge to keep her son alive
But without it, he could have ‘days or maybe weeks’ to live, his mother said. She fears the autism and ADHD has influenced the decision to switch to palliative care and says doctors at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital should keep trying to save him.
William told the Sunday People: ‘I don’t want to die.’
Amy added: ‘He is probably going to die from this. But he’s not ready to die now. He deserves a chance like everyone.’
On the issues caused by William during dialysis, she said: ‘It’s his disability, he’s not interfering with the line on purpose. I don’t believe doctors would be advising us in this way if he wasn’t autistic.’
She and William’s father, Will, 43, won’t accept Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust’s recommendation. They believe their son should continue to receive therapy and be added to the transplant waiting list.
Medics say the teen should receive palliative care instead of continuing dialysis as an expert says his kidneys are ‘devastated’
A routine blood test in December 2019 revealed the teenager had focal segmental glomerulosclerosis, which attacks the kidneys’ filtering units. He had been having dialysis at home six days a week and attended a special needs school, but in September his tube opening became infected.
Doctors tried a different type of dialysis, but again William would scream and pull his dressings off and sessions had to be stopped. Last month, doctors said palliative care was the best option.
Mother-of-three Amy, of Newton, Lancaster, believes the decision is premature and says her son is well enough to play golf, adding: ‘I will never live with myself if I don’t fight for him to have this chance.’
Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust said: ‘We recognise this is a very difficult time for William and his family and we will continue to support them.’