Candice and Mike Brusseau are certain of two things: they have an incredibly strong three year old, and she will someday need a new liver.
The Brusseaus, who live in Howell, never suspected their daughter, Avery, would be born with a rare liver disease. She was born on her due date, weighing just over seven pounds, but in the days that followed Avery would begin to lose weight. By the time she was 7.5-weeks-old, Avery would undergo a second surgery. Doctors performed a Kasai procedure to bypass bile ducts that were believed to be blocked because of the condition “biliary atresia.”
The surgery was a success, but is only a temporary solution. Most patients will need a liver transplant within a few years. “It's a 24-hour-a-day worry,” said Mike.
Avery’s parents are certain she’ll need a new transplant in the coming years. They wear green wristbands, the color for organ donation awareness, with the words “Cure Biliary Atresia” printed on them next to their daughter’s name. “It’s like they say, sometimes the smallest decisions in life that make the biggest impacts,” said Candice, encouraging others to sign up to be a donor.
People of all ages, ethnicities and medical histories can be donors. Although registering to be a donor is not required, it is recommended so that family members are not required to make the decision during a difficult time.
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