2022 Cleveland Congenital Heart Walk

Emma's Happy Beats

Congenital heart defects affect 1 in 110 babies born, and our precious girl is one of them. Would you help us raise awareness and/or funds so that we can save the life of many kids with CHD?

Our heart journey started when I was 19 weeks pregnant and found out we were having a baby girl with a congenital heart defect (CHD). That week we were told our daughter will require a special medication and surgery after birth, so the rest of the pregnancy was full of doctor appointments, echocardiograms, tears, fear, and a lot of hope. At 38 weeks Emma was born at a special delivery unit, I was able to hold her for only 1 minute and then she went to the PICU. She was connected to many lines, she was not allowed to eat, and of course, we were not able to hold her. At 5 days old she underwent surgery to repair her coarctation of the aorta (narrowing of the aorta that does not allow blood to flow to her body). The surgery was a success, but we had to stay at the hospital for 1 month due to a wound infection and trouble gaining weight. However, there is one thing that changed our perspective about our journey, after the surgery, her surgeon told us that she had a severe case of coarctation of the aorta, and that is when we realized how lucky we were to find out about her condition during pregnancy, because otherwise, she may not be here today as many kids with this condition that are not diagnosed on time.

Emma is now 3 years old, she is a strong, cute, smart, and a happy toddler that loves to play with her big brother. She still has other heart defects that require close monitoring.

Thanks to our congenital heart walks we are able to raise money for CHD research to advance the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of congenital heart defects. In fact, thanks to medical advances made through research, death rates from congenital heart defects in the US have declined by 37.5% since 1999

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.

Together we can make a difference! Thank you!

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