Alex is a 23 year old from Arlington, VA. He is my childhood friend, and someone I consider my brother. Alex was always very active and loved to play sports. He was also very ambitious and even served in the military for several years being stationed in different parts of the US. He decided to end his tenure in the Military to be close to his family and follow his entrepreneurial dreams.
Alex started feeling sick in mid-November, and was admitted to the hospital after being diagnosed with pneumonia. After further testing and signs of worsening symptoms, doctors determined he had an enlarged heart and his heart was not pumping enough blood to fulfill his body’s needs. At just 23 years old, he was diagnosed with end stage Congestive Heart Failure.
After a week on the general hospital floor, Alex’s condition worsened, and was sent to the surgical intensive care unit. We were told that the left side of his heart had completely failed, a few days later, the right side of his heart would fail as well, followed by his lungs collapsing. He had an EF (ejection fraction) of 15%, a person with a healthy heart typically has an EF of anywhere between 55-65%. After 6 open heart surgeries, having a BI-VAD and being placed on full ECMO support in efforts to revive Alex’s heart failure, his condition didn’t get any better. On Tuesday, 12/10/2019, we were informed by the cardiac surgeons that they had done everything within their power, and gave Alex a less than 20% chance at survival, also informing us to prepare for his likely death.
After doctors had him under heavy sedation all of December, we have since seen small signs of improvement and his heart has reacted to some of the life saving techniques. Alex is currently on a centrimag machine that is assisting the motion of his heartbeat - which is essentially keeping him alive. He is currently being worked up for what is called an LVAD (left ventricle assist device), the median cost of an LVAD in the US is $175K. In addition, Alex has been in the ICU at Medstar Hospital in DC since November 30th, 2019, and has lost all of his muscle mass, losing over 60lbs since his hospitalization.
Alex is currently on an LVAD (bridge to heart transplant) program, and the sole purpose of the LVAD is to just buy him more time on this Earth. Once given a 20% chance to live, Alex is fighting as hard as he can to make sure this isn’t the end of his short life. As we look towards the next steps, the only thing that will be able to save Alex is a heart transplant which has a median cost of $450k. We all know how complex the healthcare system is in the United States with insurance companies only covering a certain amount of total cost. It is devastating enough to watch someone you love dying, but it is more heartbreaking to not be able to afford the device or procedure that could save his life.
The ultimate goal is to raise $200K to support Alex‘s hefty hospital bill. Anything you can do to help us is greatly appreciated, whether it's donating, spreading the word, or just sending your thoughts and prayers for Alex. Thank you for taking the time to read this post and help Alex. May God bless you and your loved ones!
All proceeds will go to Alex and his family to cover medical costs.
Thank you! Abel Y. (Best friend)
- Teressa Burns