As part of the Heart to heart appeal, Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) needs two new Echo machines so we can continue to provide world class care to children with heart problems like Joseph.
We need to raise £149,893 to fund these two vital pieces of equipment.
With your help, we’ll be able to see a child’s heart so much clearer and save even more lives. It’s not just a machine, it’s a life saver.
These machines will help to treat 17,000 children a year.
One day he looked at his chest, pointed to his scar, and said ‘Mummy, what’s that?’ I explained that it was his scar from an operation.”
At just two years old, Joseph asked his mum, Ruth, about the scar on his chest.
Born with a heart condition, Joseph’s life was saved thanks to an Echocardiogram machine and the dedicated team of doctors and nurses at GOSH. Joseph is keen to pay tribute to the role the hospital and its staff played and continues to play in his life.
They saved my life as a baby, so I wouldn't be here without the hospital.”
Joseph was born with transposition of the great arteries, where the two main blood vessels are swapped over. This means that blood flowing to the lungs to pick up oxygen is pumped back to the lungs instead of travelling around the body, and blood flowing round the body is unable to reach the lungs to pick up oxygen and continue circulating.
It was during the pregnancy that Joseph’s parents, Ruth and Brad, found out their son was seriously ill. Both prenatally and as soon as he was born, Joseph was looked after by paediatric cardiologist Dr Robert Yates. The family were told that without surgery their new-born baby would not survive.
Dr Yates was with Ruth on the day Joseph was born. With the help of the Echo machine, Dr Yates created a treatment plan which began the day Joseph was born. Almost instantly, he performed an operation to enlarge the hole between the upper two chambers in Joseph’s heart to get his blood mixing. Then, two weeks later, the cardiac surgeons performed an arterial switch operation to disconnect the main arteries coming from the heart – the pulmonary artery and aorta – and reattach them to the correct sides of the heart.
Joseph receives an Echo scan with Dr Yates every year to check his heart remains healthy.
Every year I go back for a check-up with Dr Yates and it's so nice to see him."
Heart felt benefits
- Accurate images of the heart means better targeted treatment
- GOSH cares for tiny hearts the size of walnuts – the new Echo machines can take micro measurements for total accuracy
- Accurate images also means clinicians can plan more operations without having to do more invasive tests
- With the two new machines we will be able to see more children and reduce waiting times
- Many children with heart conditions are at risk of sudden cardiac arrest, so every second counts
Your kind donation will be used to fund the purchase of two echocardiogram machines. Additional income raised over and above the cost of £149,893 will be used where it is needed most.
If you have a question about the appeal, making a donation or your contact preferences, then please call our friendly supporter care team on 020 3841 3131.