Patient Stories

Our Young Heart Patients and Their Inspiring Stories of Courage

Every day, the dedicated heart team at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital provides care and support for families during what can be a very scary time. We are constantly inspired by our young patients as they face their difficult journey with determination and courage. Here are just a few of their stories.

A smiling Trent at the annual Heart Walk in Cleveland

Trent’s Story

They never expected to be a heart family, but Trent's parents are so grateful their son is living his life to the fullest, thanks to the Congenital Heart Collaborative at UH Rainbow.

Nicole’s Fore Your Heart apparel line raises awareness of heart disease

Nicole’s Story

After experiencing dizziness and chest pain, Nicole was fitted with a home heart monitor, which showed that her heart was periodically stopping. UH Rainbow pediatric cardiologist Dr. Chris Snyder determined how to treat her rare condition.

Jason with the University Hospitals Adult Congenital Heart Disease team

Jason’s Story

There were no prior symptoms when Jason suffered a stroke at 43 years old, but because of the stroke, it was discovered that he suffered from a congenital heart disease called transposition of the great arteries.

Abbey on the beach

Abbey’s Story

After Abbey was diagnosed with arrhythmogenic left ventricular dysplasia, her care team – led by Dr. Chris Snyder and Dr. Walter Hoyt – determined the best course of action would be to implant a cardioverter defibrillator.

A smiling Abby and her family

Abby’s Story

Abby was 22 weeks along when her parents learned she had pulmonary atresia with intact ventricular septum. Just five days after she was born, the family returned to the Congenital Heart Collaborative for care.

Abraham smiles from his hospital bed

Abraham’s Story

Dr. Chris Snyder, Dr. Walter Hoyt and their entire team with the Congenital Heart Collaborative at UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital performed a procedure on Abraham‘s heart using a new high-density grid mapping catheter.

Smiling Clayden recovers from his heart procedure

Clayden’s Story

Clayden was born with a severe congenital heart defect in which the left side of the heart is underdeveloped. At just under one year old, he has endured two major heart surgeries and needs one more to complete the staged palliation of his tiny heart.

Contessa on horseback

Contessa’s Story

Contessa assumed she was having a panic attack when she felt her heart racing, but her upper extremity blood pressure came back in the upper 180s. Her condition was so severe that she was treated almost immediately in the Cath Lab at UH Rainbow.

Baby Eliza shows off her UH ID badge

Eliza’s Story

Eliza was diagnosed with double inlet left ventricle, or single ventricle, at 19 weeks gestation during a routine ultrasound.

Emmett at eight months old, healthy and happy

Emmett’s Story

After a heart abnormality was discovered in baby Emmett’s first ultrasound, fetal heart intervention was used to give him “the healthiest heart and best outlook possible.”

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Everly and Maverick's Story

Born at just 24 weeks gestation, twins Everly and Maverick were both born with the congenital heart defect, patent ductus arteriosus (PDA). They are the first infants in NE Ohio to be treated with a device only recently approved by the FDA.

John and Spidey recover from open-heart surgery

John’s Story

February is #HeartMonth, a good reminder that some hearts, like John’s, need special care.

Dr. Martin Bocks and a smiling Mia Wilson

Mia’s Story

Born five weeks early, Mia Wilson was diagnosed with a rare heart condition which gave her a 10% survival rate. Thanks to her care team led by Dr. Martin Bocks at UH Rainbow, Mia has accomplished many milestones and is a strong, happy girl today.

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Myles' Story

Expectant parents Tena and Joe Crock were excited for the birth of their first child. Although Tena's pregnancy began smoothly, that dramatically changed when the couple received unexpected news at the 20-week pregnancy ultrasound. Preliminary...

Dr. James Strainic and baby Nadine

Nadine’s Story

When faced with a serious diagnosis with their baby’s heart, a family reached out from Dubai. Their search led them to the fetal intervention team with The Congenital Heart Collaborative at UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital.

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Roubir's Story

12 year old Roubir was life-flighted to UH Rainbow with a rare form of pediatric tachycardia (rapid heart beat). Doctors there were able to medically stabilize him and ultimately cure him using innovative techniques.

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Sam's Story

Born six weeks early, Sam was quickly diagnosed with a life-threatening heart defect. UH experts were able to respond immediately with interventional treatments that saved his life.

Young Vinny stands with a little help from family

Vinny’s Story

After Vinny was born, the Congenital Heart Collaborative's fetal team at UH Rainbow performed a minimally-invasive procedure to make sure that enough blood was getting to his lungs, which helped eliminate the need for open heart surgery.

The #Play4Z jersey

Zaharius’ Story

The last thing Zaharius remembers is dunking the basketball. Ten minutes later, his mom watched as UH Rainbow’s Emergency Medicine team worked to save her son’s life.