YOUNG COUNTY (KFDX/KJTL) — A Young County family is asking Texoma for help after their baby was diagnosed with a life-threatening condition that will require a transplant.
Everleigh Deck was born in Graham as a healthy baby girl, but 65 days after she left the hospital, she developed a condition that would threaten her life.
When her baby was just six weeks old, mother Taylor Deck noticed her baby had turned jaundice.
“Our pediatrician called us and said, you know, you need to take her to the hospital,” Deck said. “Her bloodwork is abnormal. We took her to the hospital and they worked her up. Within 24 hours, we had a diagnosis.”
Biliary Atresia is a condition in infants where the bile ducts are blocked.
A Kasai procedure was performed and worked for about a month before her blood work began to fail again.
“They say that before 60 days, if you get diagnosed and have surgery before 60 days of age, that the success of it is higher,” Deck said. “Everleigh’s worked for probably a month, and then they started turning back around and all her labs started going the wrong direction.”
At 3 months old, Everleigh began to experience liver failure, and her only cure was a liver transplant.
Everleigh is on the list at Cooks Children’s Hospital in Dallas for a liver transplant, but that entails waiting for another baby to die.
Instead, they are looking at a different avenue: a living donor.
“It’s so sad because you’re waiting for another person’s child to pass away to save your baby,” Deck said. “Does that make sense? Living donation. Nobody else has to pass away in order for Everleigh to live.”
A living donor would undergo a procedure to remove up to 25% of their liver.
After three weeks, the liver will begin to heal itself. After eight weeks, the donor will have healed from the surgery, Within the year, the liver will be back to functioning at 100%.
According to Deck, the ideal donor is a petite female between the ages of 22 and 55, with O Positive or O Negative blood. The younger the donor, the faster the healing process will be.
“And she’s small,” Deck continued. “When you have biliary trees, you don’t process fats and protein and vitamins, so you have a hard time growing. So like, she’s the size of a five-month-old. She’s very small, so she needs a very small person too.”
The Deck family is desperate for a transplant before Everleigh gets any sicker and other organs begin to fail. once this stage begins, she will be incubated in the ICU and will stay that way until receiving a successful transplant.
Everleigh’s parents’ blood was tested, but they weren’t a match for their baby, However, they are hopeful that God will answer their prayers and save their baby.
“If people can’t donate or can’t apply, just if they will, please pray,” Deck said.