When you learn the long list of Aaron’s diagnoses, probably the last thing you would expect to hear are the words his mom, Jamie, uses to describe her son: “Aaron is a thriving 9-year-old boy.” But when you meet Aaron in person that is exactly who you will see.
Aaron was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS), a condition where the left side chambers of the heart develop too small to work effectively. This is a problem because the left side of the heart pumps blood to the body. With this side being too small, the body does not get the blood it needs. As a result, the baby can become very sick shortly after birth. If this condition is untreated, the baby usually will die.
Aaron underwent his first open-heart surgery at Nationwide Children’s Hospital only a few days after he was born, and two more open-heart surgeries before he turned three years old.
The Heart Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital provides pediatric and adult heart patients with outstanding diagnostic, treatment and research facilities. At Nationwide Children’s Hospital, patients and families experience innovation and advancements unlike any other institution. The Heart Center consolidates all cardiology and cardiothoracic surgery services into a comprehensive model for family-centered care and convenience. The Center is one comprehensive location for care, education and research. We are prepared to treat patients from 0 to 100 years of age with experts in all areas of surgical and medical sub-specialties.
“Nationwide Children’s Hospital has assembled the most qualified and talented staff in the nation to care for the most critically ill patients. Their honesty and compassion helps patients and families deal with probably the worst situation in their lives. A team of caregivers surround the family to meet the needs of the patient and family members,” says Jamie.
Today, thriving 9-year-old Aaron loves every kind of sport. He plays T-ball and hopes to be in the Special Olympics soon. Aaron enjoys playing Mario on the Wii, and playing with his sister and cousins. And he loves his teachers. He will also love each and every participant who comes past his mile in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon. No doubt, the feeling will be mutual.