Monday, September 1 2014 1:31 PM EDT2014-09-01 17:31:17 GMT
The South Carolina Highway Patrol says a man on a motorcycle was killed in a crash Monday morning.Troopers say the crash occurred on Bookman Rd. about three miles west of Elgin at about 6 a.m. The motorcycleMore >>
The South Carolina Highway Patrol says a man on a motorcycle was killed in a crash Monday morningMore >>
STATE RADARINTERACTIVE RADARWEATHER ON YOUR MOBILE PHONE
Take a real-time look at where it's raining here in the Midlands and across the state with WIS First Alert radar.More >>
CHARLESTON, SC (WIS) -
Are you an organ donor? Have you ever thought about what would happen if someday you were on the transplant list?
A 6-month-old girl is in that position at MUSC. She needs a heart, and right now has an artificial heart keeping her alive.
The device, a Berlin Heart, is a rare device that has to be shipped to the hospital when needed. Doctors say it often leaves patients in better shape for a transplant, but the waiting and not knowing when that time will come can be difficult for any family.
Colleen Mullis blogs at the cribside of her 6-month-old daughter, Kathryn Ann. For the last 2 months, she's re-located from Columbia to Charleston's MUSC Children's hospital while her baby waits for a heart.
"When she was born she was a perfectly normal, healthy baby. Nothing had appeared," Mullis said.
With no indication then that anything was wrong, Mullis and her husband took their daughter home to join their 2-year-old son, Vann. For 2 months, they thought they had a healthy and happy little girl and family, but a pediatric appointment would change all that.
"She has something we call hydrotropic cardiomyopathy where the heart is very, very thick and very, very weak," said Dr. Minoo Kavarana, a pediatric surgeon.
Doctors say everything looked normal at birth and she had no symptoms, but then Kathryn Ann started having trouble breathing and her heart was having a hard time pumping and keeping her alive.
Little Kathryn Ann had to be put on a transplant list.
"When they realized Kathryn was on the ventilator, needing chest compressions and full blown CPR, they understood the gravity of the situation," Kavarana said.
"They ended up putting in a Berlin Heart on Memorial Day and she only has one -- it runs the left side of her heart. The right side is functioning. It's still sick and weak but it's still partially functioning," Mullis said.
Kavarana has done four Berlin Heart procedures at MUSC in the last year. Kathryn Ann is the youngest being just 4 months old when the device was put in. She has to remain at the Pediatric Cardiac ICU until she gets a donor heart.
"It is essentially an artificial pump that takes over the function of the heart," Kavarana said. "It provides a bridge to a heart transplant. It's not a permanent solution by any means."
Because of Kathryn Ann's small size, Kavarana had to modify the pump to fit her heart.
"It was the best option," Kavarana said. "The other option would have been to do nothing, which some people elect to do because there's a high complication rate associated with it such as stroke, clots forming, even dying from the device. So it's not a decision easily made."
"There's no way she can't be here with us," Mullis said. "She's a fighter, and she wants to be here. She's fighting, so we're going to fight with her."
Kathryn Ann has done well on the Berlin Heart. Kavarana says her kidney and liver function have even improved as a result. He says, on average, patients stay on the Berlin Heart anywhere from 1 to 9 months, waiting for a heart.
"It's very difficult to wait," Mullis said. "Never know when you're going to get a call for a heart, and it's just something you think about every day, and it's hard to be thinking about why you'd be getting one."
"You have to learn that you can't prevent the tragedy. All you can hope is something really positive happens out of something so painful for somebody."
Mullis had never discussed organ donation with her family.
"Organ donation is a conversation that everybody should have whether you decide to do it or not," Mullis said.
"It made me realize, especially for children and those who can't speak for themselves, it's really a conversation you should have in advance."
"I don't know that people understand the full impact that it can possibly have that donating organs can save multiple lives, not just one."
For now, Kathryn Ann continues to be happy baby, growing and developing, waiting for the day someone makes the decision to give her a chance for a long, healthy life.
"Some people hope their child can change the world one day," Mullis said. "I know mine already has."
Sunday, August 31 2014 4:12 PM EDT2014-08-31 20:12:10 GMT
CONWAY, SC (WMBF) – Dozens of videos are all over Twitter from parties held at Coastal Carolina University. Many of the posts lead back to a group called I'm Shmacked. It makes videos at universitiesMore >>
Dozens of videos are all over social media from parties held at Coastal Carolina University.More >>
Friday, August 29 2014 12:21 PM EDT2014-08-29 16:21:29 GMT
An Alexander County woman is facing charges after deputies say she molested a four-year-old at a church while services were happening. According to the Alexander County Sheriff's Office, 52-year-old CarolMore >>
According to the Alexander County Sheriff's Office, 52-year-old Carol Diane Britto, of Taylorsville, was charged with one count of first degree statutory sex offense and one count of indecent liberties with a child.More >>
Monday, September 1 2014 8:58 PM EDT2014-09-02 00:58:33 GMT
You've likely noticed a spike in gas prices across the Midlands. They have jumped almost 15 cents after a steady drop nationwide.Prices are about $3.11 in the area on Labor Day, which, when compared toMore >>
You've likely noticed a spike in gas prices across the Midlands. They have jumped almost 15 cents after a steady drop nationwide.More >>
Monday, September 1 2014 8:32 PM EDT2014-09-02 00:32:26 GMT
With a severe thunderstorm moving its way through the Midlands, customers across Richland and Lexington counties currently find themselves without power. South Carolina Electric & Gas is reporting overMore >>
Over 4,000 outages have been reported across the Midlands according to SCE&G.More >>
Monday, September 1 2014 7:54 PM EDT2014-09-01 23:54:12 GMT
Whitney Hempsey remembered what doctors told her before she gave birth to her second child years ago. "It's like, 'Hey, are you tired of being pregnant?" Hempsey recalled. "'We can give you this and youMore >>
Mothers come together at Improving Birth Rally in an effort to stop rushed births.More >>
Monday, September 1 2014 6:18 PM EDT2014-09-01 22:18:34 GMT
Under a bright Carolina sun, citizens across the state enjoy going out and making a few waves on the lakes. Some like Johnathan Crossland enjoy fishing as a method of recreation and relaxation for a while.More >>
Boaters and law enforcement officials provide safety advice when making waves on the lakes.More >>
Monday, September 1 2014 3:55 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:55:16 GMT
As America's population of World War II veterans continues to shrink, respect for their role in history appears to be growing. Among those heroes are the thousands of troops who brought Hitler's EuropeMore >>
As America's population of World War II veterans continues to shrink, respect for their role in history appears to be growing.More >>