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Chris Piazzi's People
3/9/2017 Latest post:
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting. Chris has been fighting a long, mostly private, battle with a serious liver disease known as PSC for about 20 years. Primary sclerosing cholangitis is a chronic illness that slowly damages the bile ducts, causing the liver eventually to lose function. It has been identified for about 100 years, and was thought to be rare, although in recent years studies have led doctors to feel it may be more common than originally believed. Causes are still unknown, although viral or bacterial infections or perhaps a genetic component have been proposed as possibilities. There is no cure at this time. In Chris's case, he had an early diagnosis, and received treatment over the years in hopes of keeping the flow of bile more normal and thus liver function more complete. During 2015, life was complicated by the discovery of cancer in one of his kidneys. This necessitated its removal - a risky surgery given his liver condition - which was carried out at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. As always, Chris battled to return to full activity at work and play after this crisis. But over the ensuing months, a variety of health challenges continued to affect him and it became apparent that he would need a transplant. By the end of 2016, his condition truly deteriorated and soon after, he and Katie concluded through the happy serendipity of people and events, that Northwestern University Hospital was the place to begin this part of the journey.