Wednesday, February 13, 2013
NJ's Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week closes, along with a local blanket drive, on Thursday
- THE NEIGHBORHOOD FILES
- Keith Brown
Wednesday, February 13
There is a small, hand-made quilt that lies at the foot of Christopher Olivadotti’s bed. He’s had it since he left the hospital after his first open-heart surgery, the one he had when he was just two days old. Christopher is 9 years old now. He’s survived three more surgeries to mend his heart from a complicated defect. And there will doubtless be more turns in the cardiac unit of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, where a kindly stranger nearly a decade ago was moved to acknowledge his fight for a lifetime with a small token – a little warm comfort for someone so small who had already seen so much. It’s a kindness that Christopher’s mother, Alexandra Scheininger, is trying to spread around for other veterans of the hospital’s cardiac …
Saturday, January 12, 2013
Collection sites throughout Monmouth County, including two in Freehold.
Christopher Olivadotti was just 2 days old when he had his first open heart surgery. There would be three more before he was out of toddlerhood. Christopher is a survivor. He’s now 9 years old — one of the lucky ones who survived a complex and rare heart defect called Right Hypoplastic Right Heart syndrome, a condition where the right side of the heart is underdeveloped. There is a small tribute to his strength that lays at the foot of his bed, his mother says. It’s a quilt, a small hand-made token of admiration from a stranger moved to acknowledge the fight for a lifetime undertaken by an infant she, or he, had never met. The blanket was given to Christopher upon leaving the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, where the young boy …
Monday, February 27, 2012
Multiple collection points in Ocean and Monmouth counties including Freehold.
It's been five years since Alexandra Olivadotti left the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia for her son's last open-heart surgery. Just 2 days old, Christopher underwent his first surgery to address a major heart defect. The second came eight days later. Christopher, now 8 years old, had two more open-heart surgeries at 13 months and 3 years old. Hypoplastic Right Heart Syndrome often requires immediate, emergency surgery after birth, with a baby quickly turning "blue" from the congenital heart defect. The heart's right ventricle is underdeveloped and cannot get the proper amount of blood pumped from the right atrium. Leaving Children's Hospital, Alexandra saw a woman distributing quilts emblazoned with a heart pattern, an important …