POMPANO BEACH, Fla. – An estimated 40,000 children are born with congenital heart conditions every year in the United States — some with conditions so severe they require a transplant.
Shaneka Holloman was well into her 40s when she became pregnant with her fourth child, a little girl she named Majesty.
Everything with her pregnancy seemed fine until at week 26, Majesty was born prematurely with a congenital heart condition.
”I had never known she would be born with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy,” said Holloman.
Memorial Healthcare Pediatric Cardiologist Dr. Svetlan Shugh explained the condition.
What that means is Majesty’s heart was very very thick, The inside portion of it between the two pumping sides of the heart was so thick that it was blocking blood flow to her body,” Shugh said.
And the warning signs can be sudden.
”She would just drop,” Holloman said.
A team of specialists at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital took charge of Majesty’s case, ultimately deciding she would need a heart transplant.
”When you think of pediatric heart transplant you can imagine the complexity the dedicated care of the surgical team because of the size of the heart here at Joe DiMaggio children’s hospital we transplant those patients into young adulthood and the technical skill and watching the size of the heart we’re operating on is pretty incredible,” said Shugh.
Within days of the transplant last June Majesty was walking the halls of the hospital waving and blowing kisses. ”She’s a trooper. She’s an amazing little girl, she really is,” said Holloman.
Patients like Majesty need to stay on anti-rejection medications for the rest of their lives and may need another transplant in young adulthood as they grow.
The year 2020 marked the 10th anniversary of pediatric heart transplants at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.