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NEW BABY ... New Heart!


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Lisa Salberg Find out more about Lisa Salberg
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  • NEW BABY ... New Heart!

    This one is a win for everyone!
    About 3 months ago I spoke to Kim Savage - she was scared and lost and fighting her way through a maze of healthcare, diagnosis, transplant and a battle for he sons life. The good news is this is a happy happy story with a great ...begining
    Kim just called me and shared her story and I am very thankful that she did. This article appeared in the paper and explains most of the story...
    Enjoy this story of hope and life...Welcome to the world Luke, keep fighting!

    Transplant recipient has heart, life
    Topeka boy home after receiving transplant at 2 months

    By Rachael Logan
    The Capital-Journal
    Published Thursday, January 04, 2007
    Luke Savage will be 3 months old on Saturday, thanks largely to a new heart he received before he was 2 months old.

    The Topeka boy was born Oct. 6 at The University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan., with a heart disease known as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, which causes the heart muscle to enlarge and makes blood flow difficult.

    Jason Hunter / The Capital-Journal
    Kim Savage holds her 3-month-old son, Luke, while feeding him milk through a tube that runs through his nose and into his stomach. Luke had a heart transplant on Nov. 21 in St. Louis and returned to his home in Topeka on Dec. 8. The Savages are grateful to the family who donated a heart for Luke.

    http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/lu...ge-------ORGAN DONATION

    About 74 people receive organ transplants daily.

    About 19 die each day because of a shortage of organs.

    About 300 new transplant candidates are added to the waiting list every month.

    Kansas residents can ensure their organ donation wishes are carried out by checking the organ donor box on their driver's license or state ID and by downloading, printing and mailing the donor registration form available at http://www.mwtn.org.html/admin/donorregistry.pdf.

    More facts about organ donation can be found at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Web site at http://www.organdonor.gov/.

    Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

    Web site
    Kim Savage, Luke's mother, said her doctor, Dr. Cathy Dahl, of St. Francis Health Center, discovered Luke's condition during a sonogram in the 28th week of the pregnancy. Savage and her doctor closely monitored Luke inside the womb, and she was sent to the KU medical center twice a week for check-ups.

    "It started getting worse, so they decided to induce a month early," Savage said. "It was an easy delivery and everything was pretty normal."

    After Luke, who weighed 8 pounds, 4 ounces, was born, doctors tried different medicines for four weeks before they determined medications weren't working. Doctors then told the family that a heart transplant was going to be necessary.

    Within two days, mother and baby were flown to St. Louis Children's Hospital to enter its transplant program.

    "When we got there they tested Luke to see if he qualified for the transplant and looked for any other cause which might exclude him from the list," Savage said.

    About a week after Luke checked in, the family discovered he also has Noonan Syndrome, which contributed to his condition but had no life-threatening effects. The syndrome has a variety of symptoms and effects, including birth defects and growth problems.

    But doctors determined Luke was a transplant candidate and quickly put his name on the heart waiting list with a high priority.

    According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Web site, donated organs are matched with recipients based on several factors, including blood and tissue type, organ size and medical urgency.

    A short time after being placed on the waiting list, the Savage family received the call that a heart was available and he would be scheduled for a transplant on Nov. 21.

    "We got the call at 3:45 a.m.," Savage said. "Up until that time we had wondered what it was going to be like, and I just couldn't believe it was happening. We started calling our family to let everyone know and by 12:30 p.m. he was in surgery."

    Kim Savage said the experience has given her and her husband, Darrel, a new outlook on organ donation.

    "We have a whole new feeling about that," she said. "You know, you check the box on your driver's license, but now we look at it as much more important than we ever did."

    The family is sending its love to the family who donated Luke's heart and have written a letter to thank them, with hopes of further contact in the future.

    "We're saying a lot of prayers for that family because we know they had to lose a child for this to happen," Darrel Savage said.

    The Savage family, including Luke's siblings, Dalton, 13, and Mackenzie, 10, came together quickly to support Luke after receiving news the transplant had been scheduled.

    "Before the surgery we actually got three hours to spend together," said Darrel Savage, who had been in Topeka with the couple's older children while Kim Savage and Luke were in St. Louis. "It was a neat time. We prayed together, laughed, talked and enjoyed that time so much."

    The daily lives of the family members have changed since bringing Luke back to Topeka on Dec. 8. His parents said they spend much more time at home now, in part due to the fact that Luke's immune system is weakened and he must avoid unnecessary contact with people and germs.

    Luke is being fed milk through a feeding tube and takes a series of medications throughout the day. While doctors and family are optimistic about Luke's recovery, his parents said he isn't gaining weight as quickly as he should and weighs only 9 ounces more than his birth rate. He will continue to take medications that help prevent his body from rejecting the heart for the rest of his life.

    The family has received support from family, friends and the community since Luke was born, including help from their local church, Faith Lutheran; their children's school, Topeka Lutheran School; and Kim and Darrel Savage's employers, Westar Energy and Payless ShoeSource, respectively.

    "We've really been overwhelmed by the support from the community," said Kim Savage. "Both of our employers have really gone overboard for us and our kids' school has created a fund called the Go the Extra Mile Fund for Luke."

    The Savage family has experienced an escalation in faith since Luke's diagnosis and surgery.

    "I feel like we've always been a close, religious family, but this has brought us closer to God and his mercy," Darrel Savage said. "Without it I don't know how we would have gotten through."
    Knowledge is power ... Stay informed!
    YOU can make a difference - all you have to do is try!

    Dx age 12 current age 46 and counting!
    lost: 5 family members to HCM (SCD, Stroke, CHF)
    Others diagnosed living with HCM (or gene +) include - daughter, niece, nephew, cousin, sister and many many friends!
    Therapy - ICD (implanted 97, 01, 04 and 11, medication
    Currently not obstructed
    Complications - unnecessary pacemaker and stroke (unrelated to each other)

  • #2
    Re: NEW BABY ... New Heart!

    What a wonderful and heart warming story. Thank God for all of our doners.


    • #3
      Re: NEW BABY ... New Heart!

      What a wonderful story. God is at work all the time isn't he. This story just brought tears to my eyes. God bless organ donation and all our donors. What a gift.

      Diagnosed in 1977, Myectomy in 1981 @ Mayo Rochester
      ICD&Pacemaker 1996
      Heart transplant March 19, 2004 @ Mayo Rochester
      Mom of Kaye.


      • #4
        Re: NEW BABY ... New Heart!

        This is such an encouraging story and wonderful news. God is good. Thoughts and prayers are also with the donor family who now have a wee angel in heaven.

        Alison (NZ)


        • #5
          Re: NEW BABY ... New Heart!

          What a miraculous story .. heart warming and so encouraging. Congrats and many happy years to this family.

          Dx @ 47 with HOCM & HF:11/00
          Guidant ICD:Mar.01, Recalled/replaced:6/05 w/ Medtronic device
          Lead failure,replaced 12/06.
          SF lead recall:07,extracted leads and new device 2012
          [email protected] Tufts, Boston:10/5/03; age 50. ( [email protected] 240 mmHg ++)
          Paroxysmal A-Fib: 06-07,2010 controlled w/sotalol dosing
          Genetic mutation 4/09, mother(d), brother, son, gene+
          Mother of 3, grandma of 3:Tim,27,Sarah,33w/6 y/o old Sophia, 5 y/o Jack, Laura 34, w/ 5 y/o old Benjamin


          • #6
            Re: NEW BABY ... New Heart!

            Yay. Great story!


            • #7
              Re: NEW BABY ... New Heart!

              Wow. Can't imagine. They have quite a testimony.
              Philippians 4:4-9; Wife, & 39 yo Mom to 9 year old son and 6 year old son/daughter twins; Diagnosed with HoCM 1999; Cleveland Clinic Myectomy and ICD, January 2006.


              • #8
                Re: NEW BABY ... New Heart!

                all i can say is wow ur story brought tears to my eyes it was so wonderful one angel had to go home for another to come to u thank u and the family that donanated it bless u both familys


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