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Tina Turner's Sad Last Years: R&B Icon's Health Suffered After Kidney Transplant, It 'Took a Toll'

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May 24 2023, Published 5:20 p.m. ET

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Tina Turner wasn't giving up on life without a fight in her final years, still remaining hopeful after undergoing a kidney transplant with an organ donated by her second husband, Erwin Bach. has learned the Proud Mary icon was determined to make the most of her time left after she was diagnosed with intestinal cancer in 2016.

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Tina Turner with husband Erwin in 2015

The successful kidney operation happened in April 2017, but she dealt with complications as her body tried to reject the new organ, including dizziness, forgetfulness, and anxiety.

In order to beat the likelihood of organ failure, "Tina was forced to take even stronger doses of immunosuppressants to balance out the cancer medications," an insider claimed. "And all these medications are taking their toll on her health and her appearance."

Fortunately, Turner was grateful to have Bach by her side throughout it all.

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tine Turnere at a 'Tina : the musical 'photo call in 2017.

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The What's Love Got to Do With It diva wrote about her health journey and second chance at romance in her 2018 memoir, My Love Story.

"There were still people who wanted to believe that Erwin married me for my money and fame," she wrote, scoffing at the speculation. "Erwin always ignored the rumors."

Tina Turner
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"I lived through a hellish marriage [to ex Ike Turner] that almost destroyed me, but I went on," she continued. "I know that my medical adventure is far from over. But I'm still here. I can look back and understand why my karma was the way it was. Good came out of bad. Joy came out of pain. And I have never been so completely happy."

Dr. Gabe Mirkin, who has not personally treated Turner, said the percentage of success for patients with similar issues typically diminishes with each procedure.

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Tina & Ike Turner

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"Once you've already had one transplant, your immunity is automatically pumped up against foreign proteins and more likely to reject a second organ," added Mirkin.

Turner died aged 83 on May 24, 2023 following a long, unspecified illness, prompting fans to share loving tributes about the legacy she leaves behind.



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