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Jul 23, 2018
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place while we are on this journey with Lee. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. We will update when there is any change or news to report. Thank you for visiting!
For all that are new to Lee's health journey, I will give a quick recap. Lee was admitted to South Baldwin hospital on Easter Sunday, April 1, 2018. It was determined that his heart function had significantly declined and he was in heart failure. He was sent to Mobile to meet with Dr. Kenneth Burnham (a heart failure and transplant specialist) and Dr. Burnham and the team at UAB determined he was in need of a heart transplant and would be evaluated at UAB by the Heart Transplant team. We met with the doctors at UAB on May 10th and they admitted him to the Heart Lung Transplant ICU (HLTICU) the following Monday to start the Transplant evaluation. During the week of the evaluation, Lee's numbers continued to decline and they decided he would require a VAD (Ventricular Assist Device) to bridge him to transplant. Lee had open heart surgery on May 17th to implant the VAD. He recovered in HLTICU and was able to be discharged on an outpatient status on June 1st. After a VAD surgery they require a patient to heal from that surgery for approximately 12 weeks. Lee was placed on the Heart Transplant list as of May 17th but is currently marked as "inactive" as he heals from the VAD surgery. He is doing very well, getting stronger and the doctors expect to mark him "active" on the transplant list right before Labor Day. I have to mention how amazing all the doctors and staff at UAB, HLTICU and the Kirklin Clinic have been. Mary (Lee's primary caretaker) and Lee have relocated to Birmingham to be within 30 minutes of UAB to make the frequent clinic visits and other doctor's appointments (We moved Mary and Lee into an apartment in Fultondale on June 6th). Duane is still in Gulf Shores finishing up work, taking care of Blue and Daisy (their fur babies) and holding down the fort! Currently, Lee is going to Cardiac Rehab three times a week and to the Kirklin Clinic every other week for his clinic visits. Thank you to all for the continued support and prayers!