In July of 2002, Danny was bitten by a mosquito. In southern Louisiana, this is nothing to call home about. But with this mosquito bite came West Nile Virus. Danny fell seriously ill and was unable to work for several months. His family filed for bankruptcy and had to move into their parents' home. However, through renewed faith, a lot of prayer and the help of family and friends, Danny and his family were on their feet again "“ happy, financially stable and seemingly healthy. But:on July 5, 2011, flank pain suddenly incapacitated Danny. He was rushed to the ER thinking it was a kidney stone. The "kidney stone" was actually a blood clot to the left kidney. In the cardiac workup that followed, Danny was diagnosed with viral cardiomyopathy. The doctors determined that the West Nile Virus which Danny had in 2002 had in fact attacked his heart muscle, causing the cardiomyopathy, an uncommon, but known complication of the virus.
In the fall of 2011, Danny's cardiologist referred him to Ochsner Transplant Facility in New Orleans. Danny had been on ever increasing medication to try and reverse the heart failure without any real results. Because his damaged heart is so ineffective at pumping, he's been at risk for sudden cardiac failure. To protect against this, an ICD (combination pacemaker/defibrillator) was placed in his heart. Since that time, Danny's been monitored by his cardiologist and the transplant team knowing that transplant might very well be in his future.
Over the past year, Danny has been declining. The first week of August 2013 was terrible. Danny couldn't sleep lying down and was having trouble breathing in any position. He saw his cardiologist in Baton Rouge who was horrified by his condition and immediately sent him to the ER of the transplant facility. He's been in the Cardiac ICU since August 9, 2013 and every day has been different and challenging for his team of doctors. Danny is a unique patient in that his heart failure has progressed rather silently. In most patients, as failure progresses, you can hear telltale signs when you listen to their lungs. But Danny wasn't retaining fluid in his lungs; he was retaining fluid throughout his body masking the progression of this disease. In two short weeks, he's gone from being treated with oral medications to relying on more potent IV medications. Danny is in desperate need of a heart transplant as his condition is worsening by the minute.
On September 3, 2013, the decision was made to surgically place an LVAD (left ventricular assist device) to Danny's heart. The LVAD is a pump that is attached to the left side of the heart and takes over the function of pumping blood. This is open heart surgery and it is scary, high risk and extremely expensive.
To that end, Danny's friends at QRI have set up a GoFundMe Effort for those who are interested in contributing to the Sauer family's ever growing medical bills.
More than anything Danny and his family need your continued prayers. Share this story with your friends and family, share it with your church, share it with your co-workers.
QRI Friends of The Sauer Family
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