Ex-BBC Radio 1 DJ has waited over two years for life-saving transplant

Former BBC Radio 1 DJ Bethan Elfyn, 48, reveals she has been waiting over two years for a life-saving lung transplant as she vows to ‘fight on’ for her two daughters

  • BBC DJ Bethan Elfyn is waiting for a lung transplant for her condition
  • She suffers from sarcoidosis and has been on list for more than two years
  • Broadcaster, 48, said it had taken years to come to terms with her condition
  • Sarcoidosis left her using mobility scooter and using an oxygen tank to breathe
  • But she has vowed to fight on for her two daughters, aged 10 and five 

A mother-of-two BBC DJ has revealed that she has been waiting for a life-saving lung transplant for more than two years after her shock diagnosis – as she vows to fight on for her two young daughters.

Bethan Elfyn, who previously co-hosted Radio 1 on Thursday nights with Huw Stephens and now works as a presenter and producer for Radio Wales, suffers from a rare lung condition called sarcoidosis and has been on a waiting list for two-and-a-half years.

The broadcaster, 48, said it had taken ‘a good few years’ to come to terms with her condition, which has seen her forced to attend music festivals on a mobility scooter and wear an oxygen tank to help her breathe.

But she has vowed to be positive and ‘fight’ as she tries to live life as normally as possible.

Bethan Elfyn, who previously co-hosted Radio 1 on Thursday nights with Huw Stephens and now works as a presenter and producer for Radio Wales, suffers from a rare lung condition called sarcoidosis and has been on a waiting list for two-and-a-half years

The broadcaster, 48, said it had taken ‘a good few years’ to come to terms with her condition, which has seen her forced to attend music festivals on a mobility scooter

Posting online, Miss Elfyn said: ‘I’m currently on the transplant waiting list for new lungs. Yep! Not an easy journey at all and it’s taken a good few years to come to terms with this truth, (let alone the general chaos we have lived with in the last few years).

‘I’m ok – keeping positive, living life as fully as I can, still going to festivals, still travelling, still working, still on the radio (just), but expecting some twists and turns ahead. Hoping to share the journey with you.’

Miss Elfyn said that if and when a donor is found, an operation will still not be a guaranteed success – but says she will ‘journal’ her progress along the way.

The broadcaster said: ‘It’s stressful, it’s painful, it’s gonna be a super worry, I could die. And if I don’t die in the operation, I could die within a few months because the organ could be rejected.

But she has vowed to be positive and ‘fight’ as she tries to live life as normally as possible

‘The percentage rates of success are so low but at the same time I could be healthy, it could go really well and I could live life to the full again and run up Snowdon.’

Miss Elfyn, who lives in Penarth, near Cardiff, says she worries mostly about her two daughters aged 10, and five.

She said: ‘The kids, family, I think that’s the hardest thing. Gosh, it’s human nature, isn’t it? To fear, you feel for yourself. But more than that you fear for the people who you leave.

‘People talk about resilience and bravery, I honestly don’t feel brave, but I do feel resilient. I feel like I am ready to fight and I’m ready to kind of keep going. You’ve got to.’

Sarcoidosis: Rare lung condition that leaves sufferers with short breath and persistent cough

What is sarcoidosis?

Sarcoidosis is a rare condition that causes small patches of swollen tissue to develop in the organs of the body. 

It often affects the lungs and lymph nodes, and can also affect your skin. 

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms of sarcoidosis depend on which organs are affected, but typically include:

  • Tender bumps on the skin
  • Shortness of breath
  • A persistent cough

For many people with sarcoidosis, symptoms often improve without treatment within a few months or years. In these cases, the symptoms are not usually severe.

However, some people find their symptoms develop gradually and get worse over time, to the point where their health becomes severely affected. This is known as chronic sarcoidosis.

What causes sarcoidosis?

It is believed that sarcoidosis happens because the immune system has gone into overdrive, where the body starts to attack its own tissues and organs. 

The resulting inflammation then causes granulomas to develop in the organs.

Who does it affect? 

Sarcoidosis usually starts in adults aged between 30 and 40, but can affect people of any age. It is rare in childhood.

The condition affects people from all ethnic backgrounds. It is also more common in women than men.

Is there a cure for sarcoidosis? 

There is currently no cure but symptoms can usually be managed with medicine.

Source: NHS England 

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