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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Rejection

The time has come. While the first year is most critical, a transplant patient is never free of the risk of rejection.

Gabriella has been having upset belly aches lately and today's was debilitating. A belly ache in a transplant kid can mean the normal too much candy or it can mean rejection. Imagine how fun that is for us as parents to figure out! The difference today was Gabriella's heart rate, elevated at resting. Her transplant team instructed us to go to the ER. I was hesitant for a few reasons, but the high heart rate sold me so we came to Phoenix Childrens Hospital.

ECHO showed a 5mm enlargement of her left ventricle in comparison to her ECHO 2 weeks ago. It also showed significant leaking in her mitral valve, where she typically just has a 'trace'. After our cardio team here in Arizona consulted with the transplant team in California, they agreed Gabriella was beginning rejecting her sparkly heart. Loma Linda advised an aggressive steroid regimine and 48hours of IVIG to help her body stop the rejection, then increase her target range of medications to prevent her from going into rejection again.

Gabriella feels great, thank goodness. Like the CMV she got August last year, we caught it early before any effects took place on her or her angel heart. She even told me in the car that her heart felt great. Gotta love my little fighter!!!

I'm convinced this was caused due to a combination of things... Changing both of her transplant meds, lowering her target range and her body not metabolizing them properly. The combination, not anyone's fault, was just enough for her body to go on strike against her sparkly heart. But the most important thing is that she's happy, her heart is not damaged or stressing too much and we can kick this before it's too late! I'm thankful to God for that!

Thank you all for the prayers and being so faithful in not forgetting Gabriella. Please pray that this plan of action is enough to stop rejection and that her heart remain strong through this!!!
Kristi Vega
www.GabriellasHeart.com <3
Sent from my BlackBerry
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