My husband Nick was born with tricuspid atresia, a congenital heart defect where one of the valves of the heart is missing and therefore blood cannot flow normally from the right atrium to the right ventricle. He’s had several open heart surgeries (the first when he was a day old,) has a pacemaker, and takes a lot of medication to ensure his heart functions as it should. Nick has an incredible team of doctors at both CHOP and The Hospital at the University of Pennsylvania who have done an amazing job with his care. But, they’ve always known that the heart he was born with wouldn’t see him through to old age. They’ve known his only option to live a longer life would be a heart transplant.
In January, after a brief hospitalization for a stubborn arrhythmia and a general decline in his health, Nick’s doctors felt it was time to evaluate him for not only a heart transplant but a liver transplant as well. An unhealthy heart puts a strain on all the other organs and his liver has had to filter blood from an aortic leak, which has caused it to develop cirrhosis. We spent many days at Penn going through the evaluation process and Nick’s doctors decided that now is the time to move forward with both transplants.
This is our journey towards Nick getting a new heart and liver. We will be using this CaringBridge website to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement.