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We are fighting for the life of a 2.5-year-old Dawid! An extremely dangerous heart and lungs defect is a death sentence which a small, innocent boy received from fate. In all Europe, nobody will decide to operate – the defect is too complicated. The only hope is in the USA. Only Dr Hanley has given us a chance to save our son's life. We have little time, as our boy's heart is getting weaker and weaker…. Although it is not much visible yet – Dawid is dying! There is a whole army of people with good hearts needed in order to collect such a gigantic amount of money for this operation. We can perform this miracle together, we may save the life of this small one!
When information from the USA came that that our son qualified for an operation and that Dr Hanley can see a chance to fully repair his heart and lungs defect, we found new hope. But nearly at the same time we lost it…. This is an unusually complicated operation which costs 1.3 million dollars that is over 5 mln PLN. Thanks to this operation our son can be healthy, he can be alive…. Dr Hanley has already repaired the hearts of Emil and Julia from Poland. Thanks to generosity of many people, these children are growing with their fixed hearts. They are alive! This makes us hope that also Dawid can make it!
Please help us collect this money! Let's perform this miracle together, let's save this little one's life! We are running out of time!
We barely sleep because it is impossible to sleep when death is standing at the foot of our son's bed. The sentence has been given and we may either wait for its execution, or we may fight, although common sense says that this is mission impossible. Over 5 million PLN. How can we even imagine such an amount? But when this concerns my child, the most important person in my life, I have to try! I will never come to terms with the situation that my son has to die because we do not have money to save him…. I need to believe that if millions of sensitive hearts are touched by suffering of an innocent child, we will make this miracle happen!
We are trying to receive financing from Polish National Health Fund, but the chances are slim – neither Emil nor Julia received it, and their operations were cheaper. Nonetheless, they managed thanks to help of people with good hearts, often due to help of total strangers. Will my son get his chance as well? For such an amount, several lives may be saved, and this is a price of only one boy's life. Calculation is easy, this is about statistics. But should I come to terms with this that my son will not be saved because it costs so much? I will do everything for Dawid to be alive. There is nothing more important. That is why, today, we are begging everybody who is able to help….
We are calculating: if 4.5 million people pay 2 PLN, our son will live. 2 PLN is not a lot of money, and 4.5 million of people is just 10% of our country's citizens… we know this is naive, how to reach such a huge number of people, how to ask for 2 PLN…. But we need to catch each glimmer of hope, as there is nothing more we can do…
Today Dawid is 2.5 years old and at first sight no one would say that he is dying . He still does not have purple lips and paper white skin. As every child, he wants to run and play. But when he runs a little, he gets very tired. He touches his heart and shows - “Mom, it hurts! Here!” We can see that he is getting weaker and weaker. His heart cannot manage to supply oxygen to all his growing fast organism. If we do nothing, Dawid will die in agony. One day his heart will not supply the necessary amount of oxygen to his body, blood will get thicker and our son will suffocate…
About his defect we got to know during pregnancy routine Ultrasound examination. We hoped, this was a mistake, that everything would be good. Even if not, heart defects may be repaired, kids get healthy! In Dawid's case everything was supposed to be different. He was born beautiful, big and strong. I remember he was crying loudly as if he wanted to say: “Mom, dad, I am here and I want to live!” I got him in my arms and for a short moment I thought, that all of this was a bad dream, that my child was healthy!
Unfortunately, minute by minute it was worse and worse… Dawid was getting cyanotic, he had no power to cry. He was connected to medical equipment, plenty of cables. A real struggle for his life began.
The decision was taken to transport him to Zabrze to Pediatric Cardiology Unit. My husband was chasing the ambulance and on spot some doctor told him that probably our son would not survive the night. Next day, I requested for discharge, I didn't even feel pain. I had to be next to my baby… Dawid was still alive, he was fighting so bravely! The first operation took place two weeks after that. The second – hybrid cardiac surgery with stent insertion to left pulmonary artery, and defect correction was in 15th month of our son's life. We felt relief – it was supposed to be good from then on!
We were grateful to doctors for their effort which they put into Dawid's treatment. We knew that many cardiology check-ups are ahead of us. The fate, however, was not graceful to us… After only half a year of operation, it occurred that catheterization was needed because a result of heart ultrasound examination was bad. Another fight for life began… Our son underwent several operations and it appeared that not only pulmonary arteries are hypoplastic but also small deep vessels which supply blood to lungs.
Dawid had already had 4 catheterizations, this one was supposed to be the 5th. The worst...we were waiting next to operational hall, we were a bundle of nerves. Suddenly a doctor came out : there was a bleeding, Dawid was bleeding out. He could die but if they didn't finish the surgery, nobody would dilate these small, deep vessels. What was our decision? We had a few seconds to decide because behind the door, there was a real struggle.
Doctors managed to stop the bleeding, so we took a decision to finish the surgery. Unfortunately, they were not successful in dilating small vessels in the lungs. Again we were looking at a defenseless Dawid who was fighting for his life. Again we felt helpless – we could not help him, we knew he had to make it on his own...
It occurred that it was impossible to fix Dawid's heart, not in Poland. We are under care of a wonderful doctor, one of the best interventional cardiologists in Poland, who diagnosed obstruction in small vessels in lungs. And this is a death sentence… In Poland they can offer only heart and lungs transplant. At the same time they give no hope that Dawid is able to survive this operation. And not only that! Dawid will not survive till adulthood...
We were recommended to search for help abroad. But all the clinics refused to operate… Medical authorities confirm that in Europe, there is no rescue for Dawid.
According to prof. Bohdan Maruszewski, in Poland, 90% of all necessary operations of congenital heart defects may be performed in children. Our Dawid is among 10% , for which there is no rescue neither in Poland, nor in all Europe!
We only do not repair very rare congenital heart defects, which are operated on only in few medical centers in the world – in Europe and in the USA – says prof. Maruszewski. An example is pulmonary arteries hypoplasia. This defect is operated on only by prof. Adriano Carotti in pediatric hospital in Vatican and by prof. Frank L. Hanley from Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford. And even there, these operations are performed only if they are not too risky. (source)
Dawid's defect is rare and so difficult to treat that the best doctors, who have been taking care of him, are already helpless. This defect requires surgical reconstruction of small pulmonary arteries. Not only in Poland, but also in the whole Europe, there is nobody who is able to do that. In the United States, however, there is Dr Frank Hanley from Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford, who can do it very well.
The worst thing is that the operation needs to be done as soon as possible! Every month the chances for a successful operation get lower. Dawid's heart is in a worse and worse condition, his time is dramatically finishing. If he does not undergo this operation his heart will fail. He will suffocate and die in agony….
Before us there is a long way and lots of suffering but we have to manage. Dawid wants to be alive! Although we hear every single time that it is bad, terrible, that our child will die, we cannot give up! We are begging for help for our son, we are begging for a miracle, which together, we can make come true!
Ela and Sławek, Dawid's parents