Category Archives: pancreatic

Celebration helps transplant recipients meet their donors – WPXI Pittsburgh

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Hundreds showed up for a core ceremony celebrating a second chance of life for transplant recipients and their donors.

Eight-year-old Kyree Beachem was nearing liver failure when she had a four-organ transplant in late November.

“I’m doing pretty good,” Beachem said.

For Kyree and her mother Nan Beachem, Sunday was a special day because now her daughter can live the life of a normal kid.

“You don’t have IVs attached. She can ride a bike,” Nan Beachem said.

Kyree Beachem also received a trip to Disney, where she got to sing the song “Fly” on stage with country music band Maddie and Tae.

“It’s kind of been her fight song the whole way through this,” Nan Beachem.

The Beachems now have a special bond with Evelyn Morales, whose five-year-old daughter, Arianna, died on November 23.

The transplant of Arianna’s liver, pancreas, colon and intestines saved Kyree’s life.

“It’s good to see so much good come of what happened,” Morales said.

The transplant also drew worldwide attention and brought these two families together forever.

They were along the thousand people here that honored loved ones who gave the gift of life.

Kyree Beachem will have another surgery in the next few weeks.  

Ask a Specialist: Pancreas Transplants – KHON2

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February 14 is National Donor Day and Queen’s is excited to announce that the Queen’s organ transplant program has now expanded to include pancreas transplants.  Learn what the pancreas does, who would need a transplant and how a transplant can change or save a life. Join Dr. Jon “Kai” Yamaguchi, transplant surgeon at The Queen’s Medical Center, in this segment of Ask a Specialist on Wake Up 2day.

What does the pancreas do, and who might need a pancreas transplant? It helps in digestion of food and works to control blood sugar levels.

Type I diabetic patients and limited type II diabetes mellitus patients might need a pancreas transplant.

A pancreas transplant might change or save someone’s life because it can take away the need for injected insulin, can stop the troubles with high and low blood sugars experienced by many diabetics; and can halt and sometimes reverse the end organ dysfunction caused by diabetes.

The process for someone to receive a pancreas transplant includes:

  • Patient goes through comprehensive medical, surgical and psychosocial work-up
  • Patient is listed for transplantation
  • Patient is placed on waiting list for when pancreas becomes available

The organ transplantation program was opened at The Queen’s Medical Center in January 2012. Since then, more than 230 liver and kidney transplants have been performed.

To learn more about the organ donation process, and how you can register to become an organ donor, call the Queen’s Transplant Center at (808) 691-8897 or go to

UNMC doctor saves 5-year-old boy with quadruple transplant – KETV Omaha

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Doctors had given up, telling the little boy’s parents that their son wouldn’t survive. However, after a journey that sent the Oklahoma family to Omaha, a procedure saved the boy’s life.

Nolan Sensintaffar acts like a typical 5-year-old. But the IV line and feeding tube attached to him paint a different picture.

[Video: UNMC doctor saves 5-year-old boy with quadruple transplant]

“At six weeks, (everything) took a turn,” Nolan’s mother, Heather Sensintaffar, said. “(He) wouldn’t tolerate anything. (We) tried different formulas, nothing was working. Wasn’t absorbing anything and started losing weight.”

Doctors thought he was allergic to formula. Heather Sensintaffar took him to see a specialist in Dallas, but the specialist couldn’t solve the issue. The family then underwent genetic testing in St. Louis, and doctors discovered a rare genetic disorder.

“There they told us there was no hope,” Heather Sensintaffar recalled. “Take him home. They refused to do anything else. Take him home and enjoy him while you can.”

Heather Sensintaffar and her husband refused, and a specialist they had seen earlier suggested they go to Omaha.

“When we showed up, we met Dr. Mercer and he took a look at Nolan,” Heather Sensintaffar said. “He had a plan of action immediately.”

“When he came to us, he was struggling, malnourished, not a happy guy,” Mercer, a doctor at University of Nebraska Medical Center, said.

Mercer and his team treat kids like Nolan all the time.

Before long, Nolan started to improve, getting the nourishment he needed.

However, Mercer knew Nolan needed something else: a quadruple transplant.

Nolan received a small bowel, a large bowel, liver and pancreas on Dec. 4. He calls it “a new tummy.”

“We are doing excellent,” Heather Sensintaffar said. “Everything working great, absorbing, organs are working.”

“The reality is he is doing awesome,” Mercer said. “He is certainly not lacking for energy or personality.”

“I always tell parents you have to follow your heart,” Heather Sensintaffar said. “You know your child. Don’t give up until you know.”

Mercer hopes to have Nolan leave the hospital next week, but he will still need regular checkups over the next six months. Heather Sensintaffar is renting a home in Omaha, and her two kids and husband will visit from their home in Tulsa as much as possible.


10 years later, Ferrysburg girl still thriving after triple organ transplant – Fox17

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POSTED 6:30 PM, MAY 8, 2015, BY , UPDATED AT 11:16PM, MAY 8, 2015

FERRYSBURG, Mich., — Next month, Jasmine Dombroswki will turn twelve, but she is already celebrating another special milestone. Ten years ago, the fifth-grader underwent triple organ transplant surgery, receiving a new liver, small bowel and pancreas.

“Chances of getting that, just aren’t good. Being able to get all three of them for an infant, that would fit her as well and her blood type…But it worked, so we got really lucky,” said Stacy Allen, Jasmine’s mother. “Now it’s 10 years later and she’s still doing perfect, with no signs of rejection in any three of her organs.

Jasmine was born two months premature, weighing just over two pounds. Within weeks of the delivery, her mother learned Jasmine had developed Necrotizing Enterocolitis, a condition that caused portions of the bowel to die and need to be removed.

“She had to have so much of hers taken out that she needed to have a transplant,” explained Allen. “When we were sent home, she was on the transplant list.”

After five and half months in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, the family had to now wait for the call that could save Jasmine’s life. It came on January, 17, 2005, when Jasmine was exactly one and a half years old.

The family flew to Omaha where Jasmine underwent surgery at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. The family has since learned the donor was a little boy, but due to transplant protocol, much of the other information, including his identity has been kept anonymous.

Allen has tried to express her gratitude to the donor’s family with a letter.

“Writing a note like that is heart wrenching, because they had to lose their kid in order to save mine,” she said.

To celebrate the 10 year milestone, Stacy and Jasmine are planning to return to Omaha in July for the Nebraska Medical Center’s annual transplant reunion. The event brings together hundreds of patients, along with transplant surgeons and staff.

Jasmine said her message to the doctors who saved her life, would simply be “thanks”.

The 11-year-old still has the scars from the surgery and feeding tube that she had to use for years, but now she is eating on her own and  healthy.

“She’s a miracle, everybody tells her, she is such a miracle baby,” said Allen. “When she gets older, she’ll understand everything she’s been through since birth, and she’ll understand she’s a miracle baby.”

A family member has created a GoFundMe account to help the family raise money for travel expenses.

If you’d like to learn more, or donate, click here.

Bardstown boy in need of pancreatic transplant – WDRB 41 Louisville News

Posted: Aug 24, 2014 6:25 AM
Updated: Aug 24, 2014 7:19 AM
By Kelly Davis – email

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — A 9-year-old Bardstown boy suffers from pancreatitis. But despite his pain, he always finds a way to wear a smile. Shade Fikter has been in and out of the hospital 11 times in the past two years.

“We thought ok it’s just one time he’s over it let’s go home and everything will be fine. But then it happened again a month later and then it happened again a month after that,” said Pam Fikter, Shade’s mother.

What they thought was just a stomach ache turned into something much worse.

Pam said, “We never thought we’d be here, I don’t think any parent ever thinks this is something that they’ll ever have to face.”

“As a father, as a man, our drive is to fix things if there’s something wrong my job is to take care of it, to make it not wrong anymore but this is something that’s out of my control,” said Shade’s father, Dan Fikter.

Shade has pancreatitis. The 9-year-old needs a pancreatic transplant but it comes with a hefty price tag of $300,000.

“With this surgery they would remove the pancreas so he wouldn’t have the pain of pancreatitis anymore but there would still be hope that he would not be a severe diabetic,” said Pam.

It’s not a miracle surgery but it gives the family hope. Despite his struggles, Shade manages to keep a smile on his face through it all.

Pam said, “No matter how bad things get, even when he’s in the hospital, once he’s feeling a little better and he’s not in so much pain he’s back to making jokes.”

Easing other people’s pain, one joke at time.

“He makes us laugh every single day, every day, no matter what, he always makes us laugh,” said Pam.

The Fikter family is raising money for Shade’s surgery.

You can follow Shade’s journey on Facebook here:

If you would like to donate, follow this link:

via Bardstown boy in need of pancreatic transplant – WDRB 41 Louisville News.

Inspiration + Education : . . . . for parents of children who are going through transplant

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