Three decades beat as one: 30 years of heart transplants

Tina Medina and her son Luke Tina Medina was not a sickly child, yet she grew up knowing something was physically wrong. She had difficulty keeping up with the other kids in her sixth-grade class and couldn’t run without becoming breathless. Local physicians near her home in Moriah, New York, shrugged it off as asthma — until Tina’s heart stopped twice during a routine appendectomy. “I was told I had a severe heart condition and needed to see a cardiologist right away,” she says. At 15, Tina was diagnosed with restrictive cardiomyopathy, a rare type of cardiomyopathy that causes the heart muscle to become stiff, making it difficult for the ventricles of the heart to properly fill with blood. Three years following her diagnosis, now a college freshman on her way to Syracuse University, she became severely ill with multiple episodes of congestive heart failure. “The doctors I was seeing in Burlington referred me to Boston Children’s Hospital,” she says. “It was time to look at getting a heart transplant.” Tina was listed for six months. She was in the cardiac intensive care unit at the University of Vermont Hospital in Burlington when she learned a heart had become available. “I had no perspective that this was a danger, or that this was a huge deal. I looked at it as, I am finally going to be able to run, be able to breathe and not be sick.” Boston Children’s nurse practitioner, Patricia O&...
Source: Thrive, Children's Hospital Boston - Category: Pediatrics Authors: Tags: Diseases & Conditions Our Patients’ Stories Research and Innovation cardiac surgery cardiomyopathy congential heart defect Department of Cardiac Surgery Dr. Elizabeth Blume Dr. John Mayer ECMO Heart Center heart transplant Heart Source Type: news

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