Evie’s family will never forget being told their six-year-old daughter would die if she did not have a liver transplant within 48 hours.
In March last year, Evie’s health dramatically declined due to an undiagnosed genetic condition. Evie suffered a number of nose bleeds, refused to eat her food, and said she didn’t want to go to school because she felt unwell.
When blood tests revealed her liver wasn’t functioning correctly, she was rushed to The Royal Children’s Hospital. Evie was taken to the intensive care unit a number of times where doctors discovered she had a rare, previously undiagnosed genetic condition called Wilson’s disease.
Doctors told Evie’s parents, Natasha and Erich, that their daughter needed an urgent liver transplant.
“The realisation that your child is critically ill, that the medical team has done everything they can, and that the last resort to keep Evie alive was a liver from a donor, was so hard to process,” Natasha said.
“You just have to hope that there is a donor who is a match. I prayed they would find a donor for her even though I knew someone else would lose their loved one. I wanted to take my daughter home smiling.”
Remarkably, thanks to the generosity of an organ donor, Evie’s life was saved.
“There was a huge sense of relief and gratitude to the donor and their family, as well as the surgeons, doctors, nurses and the geneticists who were a part of her care. However there was also some sadness to it, as we knew there was a family who had said goodbye to someone they love,” said Natasha.
Evie is now enjoying life back on her family’s farm, and loves going to school and playing with her brothers.
“She is such a happy and healthy little girl. You wouldn’t know she has had a liver transplant unless you saw her scar.”
This DonateLife week, Evie’s mum is encouraging everyone to have a conversation about organ donation with their loved ones.
“Without organ donation we wouldn’t have Evie with us today. It is the most selfless gift you can give to someone”
“If you do choose to be an organ donor, have conversations with your loved ones so they are aware of your decision.”
Donate Life week is a national campaign which encourages more Australians to register as organ and tissue donors. For more information, or to register your decision to become a donor, visit: https://donatelife.gov.au/