Kyla’s journey with Tetralogy of Fallot and Type 1 Diabetes

Just two days after Kyla was born, she was already fighting for her life. But boy, did she fight.

Kyla was born with Tetralogy of Fallot, a rare condition caused by a combination of four heart defects that are present at birth. To keep her alive, Kyla had to have a shunt put in until she was strong enough to handle the complete open heart surgery she would need to undergo 9 months later. Although the open heart surgery was successful, Kyla would still need another serious heart surgery in the future.

Then, in April 2013, Kyla was diagnosed with Type I Diabetes. She had to quickly adjust to having 15 sugar checks per day and pod changes – all in addition to her regular cardiologist appointments. But she stayed resilient and positive.

Diabetes is a major focus of the Endocrinology Section at Nationwide Children’s Hospital.  We have a multidisciplinary team that works together to care for patients and families affected by diabetes. Our team includes physicians and advanced practitioners, diabetes educators, dietitians, social workers, diabetes nurses, and a psychologist. Our goal is to empower families to successfully manage diabetes at home in order to provide as normal a life as possible for patients with diabetes.

A few years later, the time came for Kyla to have her valve replacement. Through medical advancements, miraculously, Dr. Berman was able to do the procedure entirely by catheter, without having to do the highly invasive open heart surgery.

The Heart Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital has expertise, compassion and the most advanced technologies. As the leader in pediatric care, we offer cardiology services, cardiothoracic surgery, and everything else you would expect to find at a nationally-renowned heart center.

Through all her difficulties, Kyla has continually demonstrated her intrinsic will to not only survive – but to flourish – no matter her circumstances.

“She never lets anything get her down,” says Judy, Kyla’s mother. “She never stops! She smiles every single day and is our inspiration daily.”

Kyla is an incredibly talented girl who plays the saxophone, dances and recently made the volleyball, dance and soccer teams at her middle school. She is excited to represent the hospital that she loves and cheer on all the runners in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Marathon &½ Marathon – including her mother, who will be running in honor of Kyla.

“We do not know what tomorrow brings, but we do know we have Nationwide Children’s,” says Judy.

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Just two days after Kyla was born, she was already fighting for her life. But boy, did she fight.

Kyla was born with Tetralogy of Fallot, a rare condition caused by a combination of four heart defects that are present at birth. To keep her alive, Kyla had to have a shunt put in until she was strong enough to handle the complete open heart surgery she would need to undergo 9 months later. Although the open heart surgery was successful, Kyla would still need another serious heart surgery in the future.

Then, in April 2013, Kyla was diagnosed with Type I Diabetes. She had to quickly adjust to having 15 sugar checks per day and pod changes – all in addition to her regular cardiologist appointments. But she stayed resilient and positive.

Diabetes is a major focus of the Endocrinology Section at Nationwide Children’s Hospital.  We have a multidisciplinary team that works together to care for patients and families affected by diabetes. Our team includes physicians and advanced practitioners, diabetes educators, dietitians, social workers, diabetes nurses, and a psychologist. Our goal is to empower families to successfully manage diabetes at home in order to provide as normal a life as possible for patients with diabetes.

A few years later, the time came for Kyla to have her valve replacement. Through medical advancements, miraculously, Dr. Berman was able to do the procedure entirely by catheter, without having to do the highly invasive open heart surgery.

The Heart Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital has expertise, compassion and the most advanced technologies. As the leader in pediatric care, we offer cardiology services, cardiothoracic surgery, and everything else you would expect to find at a nationally-renowned heart center.

Through all her difficulties, Kyla has continually demonstrated her intrinsic will to not only survive – but to flourish – no matter her circumstances.

“She never lets anything get her down,” says Judy, Kyla’s mother. “She never stops! She smiles every single day and is our inspiration daily.”

Kyla is an incredibly talented girl who plays the saxophone, dances and recently made the volleyball, dance and soccer teams at her middle school. She is excited to represent the hospital that she loves and cheer on all the runners in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Marathon &½ Marathon – including her mother, who will be running in honor of Kyla.

“We do not know what tomorrow brings, but we do know we have Nationwide Children’s,” says Judy.

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