Team Kaitlyn welcomes you in our community efforts to support a young woman battling an extremely rare and aggressive heart cancer. We are all so thankful she is not fighting this alone! Kaitlyn Van De Hey
is a kind-hearted 21-year-old 2016 graduate of Wrightstown High School. She has been preparing for a future in nursing with a specialization in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). If you have had the pleasure of knowing her, you know she is caring, compassionate and willing to share her joy with all.
In March of 2019, Kaitlyn encountered a life-changing series of events. A surgical team emergently removed a liter of blood from around her heart and then discovered a tumor in the right atrium (top right chamber of the heart). Wisconsin hospitals have never seen a case like hers before so she needed a medical flight to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. A skilled team of physicians diagnosed her with cardiac angiosarcoma. Because the cells in the heart do not divide, heart cancer is rare. Incidence of this is approximately .0001% to .030%. Time is of the essence as a recent case similar to hers shows promise. This rare tumor is inside the heart of a young lady with big dreams and the courage to fight for them.
Kaitlyn is currently receiving numerous cycles of intense chemotherapy to shrink the tumor. Advanced surgery and radiation will require experienced surgeons, physicians and facilities. As a result, extensive travel will need to occur to reach these specialized teams. Her family has insurance coverage for normal circumstances but very limited “out of state” and “out of plan” coverage doesn’t come remotely close to the unfathomable financial need. We are asking you to join us in providing resources to pursue medical treatment from the best places with the highest hopes. We believe her team of physicians can make her heart whole again. She can’t wait to “pay it forward” into the hearts of little ones that may need a miracle of their own.
While a family would normally want to give their children many external blessings, we find ourselves needing to reach out to our community to ask for your support with these unexpected internal needs. The unity of our community truly humbles our hearts and gives us the peace of mind to focus on caring for Kaitlyn. We are deeply grateful for what you may be able to share. Thank you for your generosity, prayers and your connections with us as we join together with Kaitlyn in this journey. Blessings to all!
Follow her journey at http://caringbridge.org/visit/kaitlynvandehey/journal