Symptoms of a GI issue began the night she was born. The following day, she began passing some blood and it became clear that a condition which would require further treatment was developing.
Doctors did a biopsy and ruled out Hirschsprung's disease, but upper and lower contrast studies showed problems in the intestines. This discovery began a whirlwind of medical procedures and major surgeries (five at present count) that have resulted in a NICU stay of over four months and currently over two million dollars of medical expenses.
Johnathan, Zuri’s father, is a Worship Pastor at First Church in Pearland, TX. Carla, Zuri’s mom, has been unable to work as a nurse since the delivery in October due to the need for her to be present for daily doctor consultations. Due to the terms of her employment, she has no leave of absence benefits or maternity leave. Although they have insurance to cover a large portion of the medical bills, even a small percentage of the mounting expenses is an overwhelming amount.
We are launching this campaign to simply do what we can do to help. We ask you that you partner with us in two ways:
First, pray. The Dean family already feels the thousands of prayers that have gone up on behalf of Zuri. They believe God is working a miracle in her situation. Your prayers strengthen them in difficult days and touch the heart of God on their behalf.
Second, give. Many have asked what they can do to help. Your financial donation is the simplest way to make a significant impact. Every dollar you give will go directly to cover Zuri’s medical needs as her family cares for her in the weeks and months ahead.
For those interested in the details, here’s a comprehensive timeline of Zuri’s medical procedures:
•10/20/17--Central line placement surgery. Her veins were so little she had 13 IVs blow in 10 days so they needed a more permanent IV access.
•10/24/17---Exploratory Laparotomy surgery---An omphalo mesenteric band was found around part of her intestines causing a stricture.
•10/30/17---Zuri began having fever, elevated WBC, abnormal X-ray and was diagnosed with NEC. (Necrotizing Enterocolitis)
•11/04/17--Emergency Exploratory Laparotomy Surgery with bowel resection and ileostomy. About 4 inches of her distal ileum were removed. She had an ostomy and mucus fistula for 6 weeks.
•12/11/17---She had colostomy takedown surgery. Began eating after her bowels were active in about a week. Second day of eating she had projectile vomiting. Doctors let her bowels rest another week before trying to feed again, but she began to spit up again and her intestines were very dilated on X-ray.
•1/22/18 --Transferred to Texas Children's Hospital for a second opinion. Tried the feeding process once again, but was unable to tolerate. Doctors believed from her X-ray that she had a partial small bowel obstruction from scar tissue or narrowing from her anastomosis (where her intestines were sown back together).
•2/11/18--4 months old; had her 5th surgery--Exploratory Laparoscopy.
•Surgeon found an area of small intestines that was kinked due to scar tissue. He was able to remove the scar tissue laparoscopically and didn't have to remove any more of her intestines.
•They are giving her several days of bowel rests before starting the feeding process again.
As you can see, the process has been lengthy and taxing on Zuri and her family. The weight of this journey has been emotionally, physically, and financially exhausting. Through it all, the entire Dean family has remained strong and secure in the faith that God is at work in their pain. We don't know what the future holds, but we do know the God who holds Zuri’s future.
As we all pray and believe for a miracle, please consider giving what you can give to this family who has given so much to so many..
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