Not long after she was born, Braylee Frankford was diagnosed with jaundice, but doctors didn’t realize the severity of the condition. Braylee was born without a gallbladder.
Doctors were forced to connect her intestine directly to her liver so bile could drain. Unfortunately, Braylee continued to get sicker. Her body became bloated with fluids. Her skin became increasingly discolored. She was rushed to the Children’s Hospital in St. Louis.
The baby girl was so sick, doctors said she wouldn’t leave the hospital unless she had a liver transplant. With no way of knowing how long she would live, it was just a waiting game for a liver donor.
When things got dire, Braylee’s father decided to donate part of his liver. The distressed father was minutes from being wheeled away into surgery when he got a phone call.
A cadaveric liver was available. There was no need for him to undergo the invasive procedure. Braylee was given the lifesaving transplant in the nick of time. Moreover, because the donor was an adult, the liver was split among two children.
The procedure was so successful she almost immediately returned to her normal skin color. One year later, Braylee is happy and healthy at 19 months old.
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