UPDATE: Feb. 22, 2019
It is with great sadness to say that Eric passed away Friday morning, Feb. 22 at the hospital. He was surrounded by his family and loved ones. Susie said that he received excellent care and that the hospital was outstanding. They tried everything they could to keep him alive, but his body couldn't fight it any longer. Please visit the Journal entry for more information and ways to help.
Kate Butowicz Sanders - posting for Susie.
UPDATE: Eric received a liver donation and is recovering. He ended up with a full liver donation opposed to a partial liver from a live donor - which ended up the best case scenario. If you would like to support the Ludwigs in their journey, read the journal entries, click on "ways to help" to see if anything is posted or visit their Go Fund Me page. https://www.gofundme.com/a-little-help-for-the-ludwigs&rcid=r01-15480000993-fdf058faf0f847b7&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w
Eric needs us.
Over the last 10 years, Eric has been managing a very rare liver disease. Many people had no idea, and are just learning about this now. Over the years, he was able to be an active dad, continue to work, and live a pretty normal life while managing the disease. Unfortunately, things have taken a bit of a turn. Recently the condition of Eric's liver has gone from bad, to very bad and he is now on a list to receive a live liver donation. This site is dedicated to Eric - for his friends to learn about his disease, help find a donor (Are you interested? Keep reading to learn more.), and give encouragement. It is our time to help our dear friend, keep reading to learn what you can do.
PRIMARY SCLEROSING CHOLANGITIS - What ??
Eric has a very rare and progressive liver disease where the liver's bile ducts stop functioning. In super simple terms, the bile ducts help the good stuff reach the liver and then help the bad stuff leave. Without this cycle, nutrients (dietary fats, minerals, vitamins, etc.) can't be adsorbed and processed by the liver and waste (toxins, cholesterol, bilirubin, etc.) can't be eliminated - resulting in inflammation, tissue scaring, and a host of other issues. For an in-depth and more scientific explanation: https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/primary-sclerosing-cholangitis/
Eric has been able to manage this disease for many years, but now his body is having a hard time repairing the damage and is in need of a transplant. The doctors believe his best chance of recovery is through a donation from a live person - yes, this can be done! A donor would undergo surgery to have a portion of their liver removed. At the same time, Eric's liver will be removed and replaced with the donated liver. Over the next few months, the donor and Eric will heal and both livers will regenerate to their normal size - providing long-term normal liver function.
A LIVE LIVER DONATION - WHAT IS INVOLVED?
A living donor is often the only option for those who have become too sick to wait for a deceased donor transplant and typically those who receive an organ from a live donor have a greater lifetime expectancy post transplant. Simply put, we need to find a donor. If you or someone you know may be interested, the best place to start is here: https://www.uchealth.org/services/transplant-services/living-donation/liver
I AM NOT A CANDIDATE TO DONATE, BUT I WANT TO HELP ERIC!
Thank you for your help and support! Please leave Eric encouraging messages on this site and please share it with close friends and family, but please avoid posting widely on Facebook or other social media platforms. To respect Eric, Susan and the family's privacy, please send them messages opposed to dropping by the house. We will post ways in which you can help here on this site as well.
We all love Eric and can't wait until he is better! If you pray, pray. If you wish, wish on every star. Whatever it is you do, send him the best good vibes and wishes and love that you can imagine and more. Let's give back to Eric for everything he has give us - his friendship, his generosity, his love and his support - and more!