A man who battled through dialysis for two decades has told how his brother saved his life through organ donation. 

Growing up, Mahroof Farooq's childhood would switch between board games with his siblings and painful kidney treatments at the hospital.

But in adulthood, Mahroof was left in urgent need of a transplant.

It was one of his younger siblings, Shakoor Ahmed, who felt called to become a living organ donor. 

Shakoor, managing director of MyLahore, which has a restaurant in Blackburn, said: “I’ve come from a close-knit family but all of my siblings would play together.

“I remember Mahroof before he had the kidney issue. He was very strong, very clever. Even at school, he was very sharp, very gifted and very talented.

Lancashire Telegraph: Brothers Shakoor Ahmed and Mahroof Farooq, picturedBrothers Shakoor Ahmed and Mahroof Farooq, pictured (Image: NHS)

“In the early years, we weren't really aware of the severity of the illness, we were just like, he’s ill in hospital, you know, he's just gone in for something and he'll be back soon. It was upsetting to see my brother, who was our rock. 

“He was the eldest and I’ve still got memories of going up with my mum, catching three different buses just to get to the hospital.”

Mahroof said: “I'd been on dialysis for two decades. It was extremely painful and I would scream, and I still remember Shak holding my right arm, so I didn't pull the needles out.

“It got to a point when I think my body had just taken what it could. I couldn't have carried on like that.”

The only solution was a kidney transplant, but Mahroof declined his brother’s initial offer amid concerns over the implications on his health. 

“I thought, my life's gone anyway,” Mahroof said.

“I didn't want to jeopardise his life in any form. So I didn't tell him, I just contacted the doctor directly myself.”

Shakoor went through a series of tests and pleaded his case with the help of his parents and wider family.

The transplant process got underway, unlocking a new chapter of Mahroof’s life and health. 

“The quality of my life increased and it was a new life,” Mahroof said.

“I could eat and drink whatever I wanted, I was a totally different person. He’s not only given me life, he’s given my wife, my kids a life. What he has done is something I couldn't repay, even if I gave my own life to him.”

Shakoor also signed up to the organ donation register, meaning his organs can be used when he passes away. 

Anyone can sign up in only a couple of minutes by visiting the website, www.organdonation.nhs.uk/register-your-decision.