Wall Of Life - Kate - Fifty Lives

Tissue Recipient

"At the age of 4 my family doctor discovered I had a disorder called aortic insufficiency.  All through my life I knew I would need to have surgery at some point but it happened a little sooner than we anticipated.  Right after my 22nd birthday my cardiologist told me it would be necessary to have my aortic valve replaced because it was leaking and I also had an aneurism, which was extremely dangerous.  Luckily, my doctor was very forward thinking knowing how active of a life I had led and how much we wanted children so he suggested we use a human tissue valve.  

"Through the generosity of a family I will never know I was given this new lease on life.  I think about that family all the time.  I think the hardest thing, as a recipient is that you know someone had to suffer for you to be so blessed.

"I'm the perfect example of someone 100 years ago who wouldn't be sitting here today if it weren't for the research that scientists have done.  When we're able to give scientists the opportunity to work with this tissue, and make it available for other people, our quality of life as citizens of this world is so much better.