Elijah loves playing hockey, football and basketball. Thanks to the Stollery Children’s Hospital, he can continue to play sports and hang out with family and friends.
Thirteen years ago, soon-to-be parents Tracie and Sue received a call letting them know the child they were to foster (and eventually adopt) had been born at only 33 weeks. When they met little Elijah, he was hooked up to a feeding tube and struggling with his oxygen levels. A week later, experts at the Stollery diagnosed him with several holes in his heart and Tetralogy of Fallot, meaning a valve in his heart was too narrow and he’d need surgery in a few months.
When Elijah was eight months old, he was healthy enough to have his first open-heart surgery. While his surgery had many complications, he recovered incredibly well and went home much sooner than expected.
Elijah grew to be an active young boy. Then, at the age of seven, he started to have trouble keeping up at hockey practice. His moms took him to the Stollery and learned their son would need a second open-heart surgery to repair a failing valve. This surgery took longer than expected, but it went well with Elijah recovering at home just six days later.
At a routine checkup five years later, Elijah’s family learned his valve would need to be replaced. But this time, he could have a catheter procedure instead of a third open-heart surgery which, thanks to recent advancements, was a safer and less invasive option.
While Elijah’s heart will continue to be monitored for the rest of his life, thanks to the Stollery, he’s able to keep playing hockey and do all the things he loves to do.
Elijah’s parents share how grateful they are to have a world-class children’s hospital right in their own backyard. It’s thanks to support from corporate partners like you, through foundations like the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation, that Elijah can benefit from state-of-the-art treatment and clinical advancements – and continue to be the active boy he loves to be.