2022 Pittsburgh Congenital Heart Walk


Jesse's Heart

Our team is raising critical funds for congenital heart defects! Congenital heart defects are the most commonly occurring birth defect, affecting approximately 1 in 110 babies born, or a child born every 15 minutes. Congenital heart defects are the leading cause of birth-defect related mortality.

Our Story: At our 20-week ultrasound, we discovered that our son Jesse Albert would be born with a rare congenital heart disease. Tricuspid Atresia, a type of hypoplastic right heart syndrome (HRHS), is a heart condition in which the tricuspid valve of Jesse's right atrium/ventricle did not fully develop during the earliest weeks of pregnancy.  In addition, Jesse also has a ventricular septal defect (VSD), which is a small hole that develops in the heart. Although CHD is fairly common in babies, complex heart conditions such as Tricuspid Atresia occur in about 1 in 10,000 live births. (NIH)

This condition has required Jesse to undergo two life-saving surgeries, a heart catherization, and a few emergency room visits in his first five months.  Jesse's first heart surgery at just six days old was a procedure called a pulmonary banding. He underwent his second planned surgery called the Bidirectional-Glenn at four months old on May 3, 2021. Jesse still has a third heart procedure to undergo, called the Fontan.  Jesse will undergo this procedure later this year.  This will hopefully be Jesse's last heart procedure that he will require.

CHD is a lifelong condition that Jesse and many other children live with every day. Children with CHD need lifelong medical care and support, and the funds raised by Jesse's Heart team will make a difference in lives of those with CHD.  We are incredibly grateful to our family, our friends, Jesse's CT surgical team, medical service providers, and organizations like the Children's Heart Foundation and Conquering CHD for supporting us and providing Jesse with every chance at living a fulfilling life.

Funded research is making a very big difference in the lives of CHD patients, helping to reduce incidences and increase survival, longevity and quality of life. Research has made a very big impact, and with survival and longevity increasing, even more research is needed to help address lifelong challenges that CHD patients will face. Every dollar in support of The Children’s Heart Foundation helps to further their mission: To fund the most promising research to advance the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of congenital heart defects.

Please support our team, join us for the Congenital Heart Walk, or both!

For more information on Tricuspid Atresia:

  • https://www.mottchildren.org/conditions-treatments/ped-heart/conditions/tricuspid-atresia
  • https://www.rch.org.au/cardiology/heart_defects/Tricuspid_Atresia/

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