Kids With Heart

Kids With Heart

Michael H KWH 

Meet Michael from Great Bend, Kansas

Right now I am an 11 year old boy with many limitations, but I just have to make the best of them.  I am lucky to be alive!  I can not play contact sports, can not be forced to run, and can not play any competitive sports.  Extreme heat and cold also are bad for me. 

But there are other activities that I can do and I've just had to learn my limitations.  I do not think I will have to have any more surgeries, but the procedures they have done are fairly new with the oldest patient probably only in his 40’s. 

At 6 days old, I had my first surgery. This procedure was called the BT Shunt.  They placed a shunt in my heart to reroute my blood.  At this time I was told my heart was as tiny as an acorn, which is amazing that a heart so small can be operated on.

At 3 months old they had to enlarge my atrial septum from 2mm to 14mm.  From that point on, every time I went back they called me the miracle baby.  Read more about Michael's story


Michael H KWH 1st Surgery
Michael's 1st surgery
Michael H KWH 2nd Surgery
Michael's 2nd surgery

"Just over 50 years ago, children with serious congenital heart disease (CHD) invariably suffered premature death or marked disability.

With the invention of the heart-lung machine by Gibbons and its expanded utilization by Kurklin, Lillehei, and other early congenital heart surgeons, the outlook for these young patients improved significantly. Progress in the treatment of children with CHD has continued to evolve to the point that currently, there are few congenital heart defects than cannot be treated with open-heart surgery, catheter based therapy, or medication.

These patients are now surviving into adulthood with the anticipation of leading healthy and productive lives. In fact, advances in the treatment of children with CHD have improved their life expectancy, such that nearly 90% of these children survive to adulthood."

Preparing Adolescents with Congenital Heart Disease for Transition to Adulthood
February 28, 2011
Frank W. Sellke, MD



In the past fiscal year, 2011-2012,  the American Heart Association committed $14.8 million towards new research broadly related to children's heart disease.
American Heart Association Pediatric Research Facts 2011-2012

Pediatric Stroke: How We're Fighting Stroke in Children 

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Kids with Heart are local heart-survivors, serving as ambassadors for the American Heart Association. Through sharing their story and encouraging others to support Jump Rope and Hoops for Heart, they are helping the American Heart Association build healthier lives, free of cardiovascular disease and stroke. 

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