1 in 100.
That’s what they say. 1 in 100 kids is born with a heart defect. I think the actual ratio is a little higher, about 1:125. But that doesn’t mean much to a mom of a CHD warrior or angel. And for those of us with more “complex” “rare” va-va-voom CHDS, numbers tend to mean even less. See Emerson won the lottery. He is 1 in 10,000 kids to have his heart defect
February is CHD awareness month. And let me tell you, it doesn’t get enough awareness. Where is the St. Jude’s for CHD? Where is the mass media awareneed? Do you know more kids are diagnosed with heart defects than childhood cancer? This is brought up in no way to minimalize cancer or to take fundraising from finding a cure. It is merely stated to point out that there is a misconception that cancer is more common among children than heart defects.
This month, particularly the week of Feb 7-1, CHD parents everywhere are pushing for more funding, more publicity, and more education on heard defects. And I push with them.
My son, Emerson, was hospitalized last night due to a GI bug. Usually, we go up to the CVCC, a floor designed for heart patients who tend to be more susceptible to sharing germs. Last night, we were told that we would be in PICU due to CVCC being full. Not only were we kicked up a floor, but another patient who just left the cath lab was also sent to PICU. The CVCC is full to the brim. There are too many kids with heart defects.
Yet, I am filled with hope. I am amazed by the advances every day in modern medicine. I am in awe of the amazing feats accomplished in the OR every day by heart surgeons. Thirty years ago, my son would have died. In thirty years from now, maybe no one has to be born with a heart defect again.
Spread CHD awareness. It touches someone you know.