Former FC St. Pauli, Werder Bremen, and Mainz 05 striker Ivan Klasnić, who previously received two kidney transplants, now requires another kidney to live as his body has rejected the second transplanted kidney.
Klasnić received kidneys from his parents in 2007 after suffering from kidney failure. It was discovered after Werder Bremen’s match against Udinese in November 2005 when he went to the hospital with appendicitis. Doctors could not operate due to high creatinine levels in Klasnić’s blood. The first kidney came from his mother, Sima, in January but his body immediately rejected it. He received the news on his 27th birthday, five days after the surgery. His father donated a kidney two months later which allowed him to return to Werder Bremen the following season, despite team doctors’ concerns about his body’s abilities to withstand the toil of the top league.
Klasnić continued his brilliance for the Croatian national side, competing in EURO 2008 and bagging two goals after also featuring in the 2004 Euros and the 2006 World Cup. He is widely recognized as the first solid organ recipient to participate in a major international senior soccer tournament. Born in Hamburg, the 36 year-old scored over 70 goals in German league play and another 30 while featuring for Nantes in France and Bolton in England. He returned from England and signed with Mainz for the 2012/2013 season, but only featured in a handful of matches before retiring. Klasnić featured in over 250 matches in Germany, with the majority wearing the green-white of Werder Bremen.
Klasnic is currently receiving dialysis treatment in Hamburg and is on the waiting list in Germany.
Editor’s note: Author Kai Dambach, in his mid-20s, is a fellow kidney transplant recipient.
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