Patient Spotlight: Hank Anderson

When Carolyn and David Anderson found out that they were expecting their second child, they were ecstatic. At the end of their routine 20 week ultrasound, however, their joy and anticipation had turned to fear and uncertainty. The doctors discovered that their baby boy, Hank, had a congenital heart defect called transposition of the great arteries (TGA). TGA occurs when the positions of the heart’s two main arteries are “swapped.” If left untreated, the condition is fatal. 

The Andersons recall the day they found out as one of the hardest days of their lives. Not knowing anyone else who had had this condition, they had so many questions about what their baby’s future would hold and if he would be able to live a healthy life. Although they did not know the answers, they knew they could put their trust in Texas Children’s Hospital. 

The following week, Carolyn and David met with the Texas Children’s Heart Center team who would be caring for Hank. They left that meeting filled with hope and confidence that their baby boy would be in the best possible hands.

Hank was born on December 30, 2007, and at just 12 days old, underwent open heart surgery. He had an amazingly fast recovery and went home just ten days later. Not only did the Heart Center team care for Hank, they cared for the Anderson family every step of the way.

Today, you would never know that Hank had once faced a fatal condition. He is now extremely active and spends his days with friends playing every sport imaginable. He is left with only a faded scar on his chest and a sense of resilience and determination that define him.

In order to give back to the hospital that did so much for them, Carolyn and David co-founded the Toss for Texas Children’s Heart Center event in 2013. Texas Children’s saved Hank’s life and continues to save the lives of so many other children like him every day.

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