Ari Schultz was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, meaning the left side of his heart is underdeveloped
He underwent two heart operations before he was born to ensure he would have a heart with four chambers
He had, as of March 3, been waiting 211 days for a heart transplant
His parents filmed the moment they told him he would receive a new heart
He underwent surgery that day and his new heart began beating later that night
Things he will need to avoid include Advil, tattoos, heavy contact sports and – being in a Red Sox family – Yankees paraphernalia
p class=”byline-section”> Published: 17:22 EST, 10 March 2017 | Updated: 17:22 EST, 10 March 2017
A little boy born with a rare congenital heart defect received a heart transplant on Friday, March 3 after 211 days of waiting.
The touching moment five-year-old Ari Schultz finds out that he will receive a new heart at Boston Children’s Hospital was captured by his parents and uploaded to YouTube.
His father begins with asking Ari about wanting to go to a baseball game.
Ari Schultz, five, suffers from hypoplastic left heart syndrome and aortic stenosis. This means that the left side of his heart is underdeveloped. As of March 3, he had been waiting 211 days for a heart transplant. Pictured left: The moment his parents tell him he will get a transplant
At 11.32pm on March 3, Ari’s new heart began beating following the operation. His parents filmed his reaction to the news that he would soon be receiving a transplant
Ari’s father asks if he would like to go to Red Sox game this season. Parents then roll out the information that not only did doctors find a ‘perfect’ match for Ari’s transplant, but also the operation could happen very soon, maybe the same day. Pictured: Younger Ari with his mother
He says: ‘Do you want to go to a Red Sox game this season?’
Ari answers in the affirmative.
His father goes on to say that he could actually be able to go to a game because a new heart for the boy – who suffers from hypoplastic left heart syndrome and aortic stenosis, basically meaning he was born with the left side of his heart underdeveloped – has been found.
Ari seems to stare in disbelief as his father tells him his doctors found him a ‘perfect’ match.
Ari’s voice cracks as he exclaims: ‘They found one?’
But the excitement is short-lived as the inquisitive youngster asks when this transplant will occur.
His parents have another surprise for him, though: It will happen quite soon, conceivably the same day.
The operation occurred on March 3, and his new heart starting beating at 11.32pm that night, his family wrote on his website, Echo of Hope.
Ari’s voice cracks as he exclaims: ‘They found one?’ He then wonders if the anesthesia he will be under during his operation will make him forget about playing baseball, but his parents assure him he will only forget the operation
Ari underwent two successful heart operations before he was born after an 18-week ultrasound showed his heart defect
In his spare time, Ari loves Harry Potter and baseball and the Boston Red Sox. In the video, he asks if he will be able to go home soon. It is expected that he will need to remain in the hospital for one to three months following the operation
He asks, pointing more towards his stomach: ‘Are they going to find a good spot to put it?’
His parents direct his finger more towards the area of his chest.
He hopes he will be able to go home soon, but his parents tell him it may take some time for him to get used to the new heart.
Ari is worried that he might need an IV, but his parents tell him he will be under anesthesia, so even if he does need one he will not remember it.
But this poses another problem.
After asking a series of questions about anesthesia, he fearfully asks: ‘Means I won’t remember when we play baseball anymore?’ His parents reassure him that he will only forget the operation.
His parents ask: ‘Are you scared?’
‘Are you excited too?’
‘You know mommy and daddy will be here with you the whole time.’
‘I love you so much.’
Going forward, there are many things he will need to avoid – Advil, tattoos and most of all, Yankees paraphernalia – but his family wrote that ‘the hope is that whatever we see will be manageable, and we’ll keep on keeping on whatever happens’
Ari poses with his father at a baseball game, a pastime he may be able to enjoy again this season following his heart transplant. The video of his reaction to his impending heart transplant has garnered more than 180,000 views
The video, which has been viewed more than 180,000 times since it was uploaded on March 6, ends with the family playing baseball together.
Ari was diagnosed at his 18-week ultrasound with the heart defect and underwent two successful operations before he was born to ensure he would have a four-chamber heart as opposed to a two-chamber one, his family wrote on his website.
After the successful transplant, Ari will spend between one and three more months in the hospital before he can come home.
Risk factors include his body rejecting his new heart, him getting an infection or ‘post transplant lymphoma.’
His family listed some of the things Ari, who loves baseball, Harry Potter and his siblings, will need to avoid.
These include Advil, tattoos, heavy contact sports and – being in a Red Sox family – Yankees paraphernalia.
Considering what comes next, his family wrote: ‘It’s all maybe. Add up all the maybes and we’ll see some of them for sure, but the hope is that whatever we see will be manageable, and we’ll keep on keeping on whatever happens.’
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