Life on the waiting list is a series about a kidney transplant. (It is slightly wrong that this is in the Life and Style section of the Grauniad: there’s not much stylish about it.)

I have a friend with exactly the same condition (IgA nephropathy) as the author. My friend is a fair few years behind in terms of the progression of the disease, but in some respects that means he has more getting used to it to do.

I find myself lurching between horror and hope as I read the series. Horrific that someone I care for might have to go through this and hope that the medical treatments will catch up with him and mean that his experience is a better one.

I remember a (different) friend’s wife having a similar transplant (she had to go down to minimum kidney function in her remaining one so that the condition didn’t attack the donor kidney. I’m not sure it was the same condition, but it sounds like it). She was told to drink diet coke and eat boiled sweets; that a banana could kill her. She got a male kidney transplant which was so large she could feel a bump under the skin. She’s hale and hearty now.

So there is hope out there, but it must be hard to be unexpectedly pigeon-holed as someone who has to fight a condition.