NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A White House family is continuing to fight for the life of their newborn son who is in dire need of a heart transplant in order to survive.
Andrew Preston was born on February 6 with an enlarged heart.
“It’s one day at a time. Today is a good day. If we get a heart today, then he has a great chance of making it,” explained mother Christy Hagewood, who has worked at Vanderbilt University Medical Center for 17 years.
Doctors are temporarily able to keep Andrew alive with the help of a heart and lung bypass machine called an ECMO.
“Overtime, your risk of a complication goes a little higher every day you’re on it, so if we’re not having trouble, in another month we’ll be here waiting for a heart,” Dr. John Pietsch of Vanderbilt University Medical Center said.
Andrew’s parents said their son is at the top of the list for a transplant. The average wait time for a donor heart is six weeks, however experts said finding a heart from another infant is difficult because the pool of potential donors is small.
“We hope that will be the case, that someone else who has had a tragedy that they will be able to give us life through their child to make their story one that lives on even though they’ve had a tragedy,” father Keith Hagewood said.
The couple told Nashville’s News 2 they have found great comfort in a map that hangs outside their son’s hospital room.
The map show shows prayers sent via email or Facebook from at least one person in all 50 states.
“Each day has been a blessing with Andrew, whether it ends tomorrow with a heart [or] without a heart, we have been very blessed to have our time with Andrew,” Christy said.
Aside from having an enlarged heart, doctors said Andrew is in good health.
The Hagewood’s and their three other children said they want to use their experience to send an important message to others about blood and organ donation.
Click here to send a message of encouragement to the Hagewood family via Facebook.
For more information on organ donation, visit DonateLife.net.