Cindi has always wanted to be a teacher. So, Dr. Cindi Fiucci went to college and became a teacher where her passion focused on early childhood. She has since taught at two private schools and now owns her own child care centers for over twenty years. She also took her love for teaching and young children to the college level in order to be an adjunct and educate and share her enthusiasm for young children with college students. It was there that it was first discovered she had a problem.
One of her students noticed that she was becoming short of breath during class and pointed this out to her. This prompted her to seek medical attention. Initially, she passed the respiratory tests so she was sent to a cardiologist. The cardiologist said she was the healthiest person to set foot in his office so she went back to the respiratory doctor. Her children were so helpful and had started picking up the slack and walking slower that she did not realize that she had started to slow down and the degree to which "normal" activity was such a struggle. She continued to decline to the point that she was told at this rate she has about two months to live. This was very motivational to seek other medical input. After seeing multiple wonderful doctors and having two biopsy's she was ultimately diagnosed with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis.
She spent two years on oxygen and trying everything possible to slow or reverse what was happening in her lungs; however, nothing has helped. Now she is on a very high level oxygen to the point she has to use the large tanks to leave the house, the concentrators are not strong enough. She often uses a motorized wheel chair, which had belonged to her mother, to keep her on the go and keeping up with her teenage children.
After years of helping others, Cindi now needs our help. After exhausting all other options, she needs a lung transplant. Once she gets the call this will take place at Temple University Hospital. She is doing her best to continue to be an integral part of the Early Childhood world, and, most importantly, her children. Her oldest son works full time and is a college student, but certainly does what he can to help her husband keep things running at home. Her middle child will be graduating from high school June 2018 and will be going to college with a football scholarship. As a huge football fan she is looking forward to following his next few years. Her daughter is a Junior who is an exceptional student but still has time to be her mother's right hand when needed and help her as much as possible. Although she has dedicated her time to her students and children time has run out, she is declining at a more significant rate than the previous two years.
Although there is never a good time, there's no way to avoid this, Cindi needs this transplant, it's obviously a very serious surgery, and while her health insurance will thankfully cover the transplant, there are aspects of care and recovery (including copays, medication, oxygen,,,) which are not covered by insurance. Temple doctors explained that for the first year after a transplant, a patient remains at high risk for rejection, and there are many costs associated with monitoring and guarding against this, as well as with recuperation in other ways. After-care is crucial, and it's expensive. However, as long as directions are followed and her needs are able to be met, success should be anticipated. That's where we can help.
Cindi's transplant team has advised that she should have a large contingency fund in place which can be put towards these costs. The sums are enormous, so I'm setting up this fundraising campaign to make a contribution; please give what you can and spread the word. Cindi is a wonderful woman with amazing children who need and want to keep her involved in their lives. All donations will be transferred directly to Cindi's medical expenses.
Cindi is generous, inspirational, and tries to stay positive and keep everyone else upbeat while completely in love with life in a manner which reminds the rest of us of the reasons why we might feel the same way. She does have wonderful and supportive care givers who are much appreciated and always ready to give of their time. However, she is facing a very tough time ahead, and we can help to make it a little easier and less stressful.
Thank you very much for any help!