Maura's Medical Fund

On December 22, Maura Zidar was found  unresponsive by her roomate at her home in Alabama. She was rushed to the nearest hospital by ambulance and eventually placed in a medically-induced coma. Maura had been under the care of the ICU at Saint Vincent East Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama from December 22 to December 30. Countless tests were conducted, including spinal taps, MRI’s, EEG’s, etc., but results were for the most part inconclusive. During a routine procedure, an anesthesiologist at Saint Vincent East Hospital punctured her left lung, causing a collapsed lung and the insertion of a chest tube.

After a denial of coverage from their insurance company, Maura’s family had to pay out of pocket for her transfer from Saint Vincent East Hospital to The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, a medical research university. This decision was made both for quality of care and so that Maura’s family would be better able to care for her during this difficult time.

At this point, the leading diagnosis for Maura is Autoimmune Encephalitis (AE). AE produces a remarkably wide range of neuro-psychiatric symptoms. The biggest challenge in diagnosing AE is that different symptoms may appear at inconsistent times and at varying levels of intensity, so that the disease often mimics many other disorders. AE is a complex disease that often goes undiagnosed due to the necessary and costly collaboration among multiple medical disciplines for effective diagnosis and treatment. Most AE patients require a team of doctors that may include neurologists, rheumatologists, psychiatrists, immunologists and others. 

Should this be the diagnosis, it will be an ongoing condition that will require treatment indefinitely.
Additionally, because the diagnosis is still speculative, the long-term treatment plan is unclear. Going forward, the plan is for Maura to receive a plasma exchange, as other medical tests continue.

We are creating this GoFundMe on behalf of the Zidar family to help them deal with the out-of-pocket cost of the hospital transfer, as well as the ongoing expenses related to Maura’s diagnosis and subsequent treatment. This is just a starting number, as we are uncertain of the magnitude of the costs at this point. Relieving even some of the financial burden from Maura’s family will hopefully allow them to focus more of their energy on giving her all the care and attention she needs.

Thank you in advance for your consideration and generosity.


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Organizer and beneficiary

Eva Schottenstein 
Columbus, OH
Jennifer Zidar 
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