She’s a little girl with a lot of spunk. Six-year-old Katie Testement seems like an average first grader, except for the fact that she just had a heart transplant. Reporter Lindsay Tuman met with Katie and the Testement family, and they she’s doing a lot better. When she got her new heart, unfortunately she traded one set of problems for another, but that’s not holding this little ball of energy back. ￼
Katie Testement has a special day coming up, it’s her birthday on Friday, and she’s about to be seven.
But that’s not all Katie will celebrate, Friday marks two months since Dr. Kogan gave her a new heart.
Katie was born with a series of heart complications. Her father, James Testement says, “It’s been a long journey. We weren’t even expecting her to make it to her fifth birthday. So we’re fortunate she even made it that far.”
But not even a heart transplant can hold this little girl back from living her life, she even went to school on Monday. ￼ Katie shared, “I like to draw a lot to and art is my favorite too and computer lab and library are my favorites too.”
Her mom, Kerri Testement￼ said, “On the first day of first grade she got up in front of the entire class, and said ‘I’ve had heart surgery!’ then lifted up her shirt in front of the entire class.”
When Katie isn’t showing off her scars, she puts on her beads of courage, a symbol of her journey.
￼Each bead represents a different procedure Katie has undergone. Now she has six necklaces and around eight hundred beads.
Even after her heart transplant, Katie faces a lifetime of treatment, but at least now she has time for life.
Katie has to keep up with treatment for the rest of her life. If she misses even one dose she has to be rushed to the hospital and it is considered a medical emergency. Her mother said that she is on a strict regiment of medications and has to have biopsies done to make sure the heart isn’t being rejected. The Testement family and Children’s Organ Transplant Association have set up a trust for Katie to help her with all of the finances she will face in relation to the heart transplant. They have a variety of fundraisers going on, including a Princess themed 5K on Sunday, October 13th.
Here is a link to Katie’s page if you would like to learn more about her or how to help donate to her cause.
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