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Cruz’s journey to heal his heart ❤️

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Hello everyone!

this go fund me has been set up on behalf of Cruz and his family.

Cruz is our sweet, gentle but wild child who is about to undergo his second open heart surgery on the 4th of April 2023 at the lady cilento hospital in brisbane Qld Australia.

On Cruz's 6 week check up with his doctor they could hear a murmur(whooshing or swishing sound heard between heartbeats) and referred cruz to a cardiologist in brisbane. Dr morwood gave cruz and ecg and ultrasounds and diagnosed Cruz with have a VSD Ventricular Septal Defect Hole in the lower part of the heart wall and because Cruz was born with it, it is classed as Congenital Heart Disease. Easy way to understand a vsd is the heart is made up of 4 chambers 2 upper chambers atria and 2 lower chambers ventricular the right side of the heart moves the blood to the lungs, in the lungs the blood picks up oxygen the lungs pump oxygen rich blood to the hearts left side the left side then pumps the oxygen rich blood to the rest of the body.

The VSD changes the direction of the blood flow in the heart and lungs, the hole let's the oxygen rich blood go back into the lungs instead of going to the rest of the body now oxygen rich and oxygen poor blood mix together causing pressure in the lung arteries and the heart must work harder to pump blood(never ending cycle) Most VSD's close by themselves and don't cause any symptoms. But not in Cruz's case. Cruz had a resting heart rate of 160bpm, respiratory rate ( breathing) and 60 breaths per minute, his oxygen levels were in high 80's% and we are meant to sit at around 100% on room air for a healthy person. so it would have felt like he was running a marathon 24 hours a day and slept a lot because of this. over the next 4-5 months doctors and the cardiologist kept a close eye on him in the hope the VSD would close itself.

On return to the cardiologist he gave us the bad news that the VSD didn't close but got bigger so it was then decided that Cruz would have his first open heart surgery. Cruz's weight gain was minimal and had dieticians work with him to gain weight for the surgery. October 2019 Dr Morwood told Jess and dan that cruz would be having Pulmonary Artery Banding because without treatment Cruz would have complications of heart failure This is a temporary fix until his heart can grow bigger. PAB is used to reduce excessive pulmonary blood flow and protect the pulmonary vasculature from hypertrophy and irreversible pulmonary hypertension. Cruz was 6 months old when he had this surgery and now wears the zipper scar from opening his chest while in surgery the surgeons discovered cruz also has an ASD Atrial Septal Defect another hole in the upper wall of the heart chambers. Doctors hoped this would help close down the hole but unfortunately it hasn’t worked. after his first surgery his heart rate had reduced to a more normal rate and oxygen sats came up to 98 - 100%.

Having check ups with the cardiologist every 6 months Cruz has been able to live a pretty normal life for a little boy running around crazy, playing soccer and swimming lessons, going to school making friends and all the normal typical things children do. But now 3 years later Cruz has started to run out of breath quicker than he used to and his lips are turning blue from being deprived of oxygen. At his most recent appointment his oxogen levels were down to 92% which is heading back down again, this explains why he starting to have trouble doing normal toddler things. Because of this is it now time to head back into surgery to repair the heart.

On the 4th of April 2023 Cruz will be having his second open heart surgery. His procedure will be a Redomedian sternotomy + Closure of mid-muscular VSD + Pulmonary Artery Debanding + Reconstruction + ASD Closure +/- Peripheral Canulation for CPB. Cruz's surgery will be very lengthy with a minimum of 6-8 hours on the operating table. he will be placed on a bypass machine and they will stop his heart for a couple of minutes to place the patch on his VSD. They will rebuild his arteries where the banding has been and make that side equal to the other side as it hasn't grown since his first surgery.

as scary as it is this surgery is life saving and needs to happen sooner rather than later to ensure he can live a happy healthy life.

we ask that anyone who wishes to support Cruz and his family please donate. These funds will be able to provide greatly appreciated support to Cruz’s family while they take unpaid time off work and be by his side without having to rush back to work straight away. this will give some financial relief for them at an incredibly scary and challenging time.

Thankyou so much for listening to Cruz’s story ❤️



  • Adam Prentice
    • $50 
    • 1 yr
  • Anonymous
    • $50 
    • 1 yr
  • Samuel Collins
    • $25 
    • 1 yr
  • Natasha Eggleston
    • $20 
    • 1 yr
  • Jayden Antonio
    • $150 
    • 1 yr

Organizer and beneficiary

Shanelle Clark
Charlton QLD
Jessica Clark

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