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Since January 2017, Stu has been living in chronic pain because of his cervical spine. He had major surgery to correct the problem in March 2017 and he went through extensive physical therapy to recover. He returned to work in July 2017 but with each business trip his pain worsened. In November 2017 the pain was too much to bear so he came home early from a business trip. He applied for short term disability for a second time but before the decision was made he he lost his job. In December 2017, Stu visited Duke University Spine Center. It was decided that the best thing to do for him is injections under CT scan to relieve the pain. Since then we have traveled back and forth to Duke for CT guided injections about once every 3 months. The injections relieve some of the pain. Then in May 2018 he found a job in his field at a new company and tried to return to work. Once again the traveling made his pain unbearable. His doctor advised no travel. He only worked at this job for a few months and he just could not handle it. In addition to this job, in the Fall of 2018 he was given an adjunct professor position at Lander University teaching a class once a week. Here is where he found extremely rewarding work and a job that did not cause major pain.
On 12/20/18 he fell and broke his ribs. When he went to seek medical attention it was discovered that his belly was filled with fluid. This was very sudden and we wondered why. Not long after the fluid was drained we learned that he has liver disease. In May 2019 he began the evaluation for liver transplant. He has gone to MUSC in Charleston, SC and Duke University in Durham, NC. We got the call on December 10, 2019 that MUSC has listed him for transplant. One way to get an offer is from someone who is an organ donor that passes away. This is the only way that MUSC receives organs for people. Duke will take an offer from a live donor who is 55 years old or younger as well as a person who passed away. Duke has not listed him yet but he may be listed there in the future.
Stu’s goal is to get over this hurdle in his life and become the teacher that people remember!
Thank you for taking interest in our journey and we will be forever grateful for any type of support you can offer.