Our expertise in treating heart conditions gives kids like Oliver a chance at life

I’ve worked as a nurse clinician at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin’s Herma Heart Center for 4 years. I love my job and can’t imagine doing anything else.

I’m proud to work at Children’s Hospital because here, I’m part of a team that is dedicated to our patients and their families. The Herma Heart Center staff is always here to support our patients and their families, whether their child has a mild heart issue that he or she will outgrow or complex problems that will require multiple heart procedures. I believe this dedication sets us apart.

Another reason I love my job is that I get to meet many wonderful families. The Buena-Francos are one such family. They’re featured in Children’s Hospital’s new ad campaign. Maybe you’ve seen their commercial on TV.

I met Zoe when her younger brother, Oliver, came to Herma Heart Center. She was no stranger to Children’s Hospital, having been here for routine care like earaches, and it was sweet to see how concerned and protective she was of her newest brother. She also has a 5-year-old brother, Peyton, who has been treated at Children’s Hospital for GI and endocrine issues.

Oliver was born with transposition of the great arteries, a heart defect in which the vessels that take blood away from the heart to the lungs and body are improperly connected. This creates a situation where the baby’s organs are starved for oxygen. Left untreated, about 90 percent of babies with this heart defect will die in the first year.

At birth, Oliver started turning blue and was rushed to us at Children’s Hospital. Shortly after arriving he had one procedure at his bedside in the ICU and then a few days later was taken to the operating room to have his heart defect repaired. Today, he’s a healthy, active toddler — or as Zoe says, “a pretty wild kid.”

See for yourself in the video above. And visit our website to read more stories about about the amazing kids we treat at Children’s Hospital.

Selina Steinbrenner, RN- Salina Steinbrenner, RN

Herma Heart Center at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin is one of the nation’s top programs for medical and surgical treatment of congenital heart defects and heart disease in children. The center offers an experienced team of pediatric cardiologists, surgeons and specialists and some of the best outcomes in the nation. It is ranked in the top 10 for heart care in Parents magazine’s survey of the Best Children’s Hospitals.

Comments

Our expertise in treating heart conditions gives kids like Oliver a chance at life — 2 Comments

  1. Parents should feel comforted that, although their kids will need to deal with their heart defect for life, their heart care can always stay at Children’s Hospital. I survived a congenital heart defect after open heart surgery at Children’s in 1974. I returned a few years ago as an adult requiring further care for my congenital heart defect, and again underwent open heart surgery at Childrens. At the age of 47 — I am grateful that I can still go to Herma for care.

  2. When my daughter was diagnosed with ASD in January, it was an easy decision to take her to CHW and the Herma Heart Center. Previously undiagnosed for a year and a half, we knew we wanted to take her somewhere where they would provide her the very best care. We found it comforting to know that one of the best heart teams in the nation would be taking care of her. Now, she’s a thriving toddler and will be celebrating her 2nd birthday next month. Everyone at CHW was so helpful and comforting, and we couldn’t have made it through this without them.