Port Macquarie jockey Marlon Dolendo is hopeful that he will undergo a much needed kidney transplant later this month.
The 38-year-old father-of-three’s health deteriorated last December after he suddenly had difficulty breathing after each race.
Doctors soon discovered that Dolendo’s kidneys were both working at levels that were below 10 per cent of their normal capacity.
Dolendo is hopeful that he will receive a transplant in the next few weeks.
“Probably the end of the month, it depends how I go today with my blood test,” Dolendo said.
One of the jockey’s four sisters has volunteered to donate one of her kidneys to Dolendo.
“She’s happy to go ahead with it,” Dolendo said.
The recovery period for his kidney transplant is expected to be anywhere up to four months.
“They told me (the operation would take) four hours,” the jockey said.
“After the transplant I’ll be in hospital for nine or ten days but after that they’ll have to check me out for three or four months”
The jockey is hopeful he will be able to return to riding in the near future.
“When I was talking to a couple of specialists the other day at Coffs Harbour they said as long as there is no problem there is no reason I couldn’t go back to riding,” he said.
“Hopefully everything will go alright and I could go back riding at the end of the year.”
Dolendo is unsure what career path he would take should he not be able to return to the saddle.
“Nothing I could think of,” Dolendo said.
“I’ve been riding for so many years, that’s all I do.”
One thing is for sure, riding is Dolendo’s passion.
“If I can’t go back riding… I’ll go crazy,” he said.