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Winners: April Donor Awareness Contest 2024

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John Guidry

One donor can save up to 8 lives and enhance 75 more

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Ora Gibson

One donor can save up to eight people’s lives, and my husband was one.

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Carolina Arnold

I have been an organ donor awareness advocate for more than 30 years

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John Downs

Consider registering and becoming an organ and tissue donor.

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35th Transplant Anniversary

Today (May 7, 2024) is the anniversary of the day that my donor died. He left his heart of gold for me. 35 years ago I was notified by the transplant coordinator on call that they had a new heart for me. I did not believe it at the time, but then quickly reality hit me that this was real and that the nightmare i had been stuck in for the previous 2 months was not some random and horrible dream.

 

I am forever grateful for this gift. This second chance; this gift of life. I have lived with and come to terms with the guilt that someone died and I lived; died so that I can live. In reality, the guilt feelings are not natural; his death circumstances, whatever caused his life to end, happened without any reason that was caused by me, however his death and his choice to be an organ donor has benefited me and kept me alive for the past 35 years. In 1989 | had actually never heard of heart transplantation. I was not ignorant, just young and healthy and had never known anyone who had needed a transplant.

 

There was no history of heart problems in my family; all of my relatives lived into their 80’s or 90’s. My wife and i were expecting our second child when i became ill. Idiopathic cardiomyopathy was my diagnosis with an estimated life expectancy of 3-4 months without a new heart.  The road has not been easy or smooth at all. I was wheeled into surgery at 3 am on the 8th of May 1989.
 

Everyday since then i have been grateful and thankful for this gift. To everyone who i have met since and to everyone of my family and friends thank you for your love and support. Thank you to my transplant family and team and especially huge thank you to my donors mother and to you my donor. Thank you for giving me your heart of gold. I hope that i have kept this gift as strong and healthy and beautiful as you intended!

Thank you!  John Downs 

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Heart Exchange Support Group

CELEBRATING 37 YEARS OF SERVICE

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A supportive network to help in a time of need for patients and family members...The primary purpose of the Heart Exchange is to provide emotional support for transplant patients (Heart, Kidney, Liver, and Lungs) during the difficult wait for a donor organ and to support those who have received transplants at CHI St. Luke's Health–Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston, Texas and other centers.  The Heart Exchange is open to everyone!

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GET IN TOUCH

We'd love to hear from you

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Transplant Games 2024
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Terry is a heart transplant receipient. Terry has been providing a Recipe every other Week to us for the past few months. As we all know, waiting for a transplant or being a transplant recipient requires maintaining a healthy diet.  

 

If you have a transplant healthy recipe, please submit it to Terry. We look forward to hearing from you!!!

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What We Do

  OVER  
$600,000 in Grants

Research Support

60

+ Meetings & Activities/year (including virtual)

37

YEARS 

25

+ ACTIVE MEMBERS

Resources

The Heart Exchange exists for the benefit of transplant patients, their families and loved ones!

Our Stories 
Sharing Our Experiences

I was born with cyanotic congenital heart disease,ASD, VSD, transposition of the great vessels, and pulmonary stenosis.

 Activities 

Support Meetings 

2nd Saturday of the month at CHI St. Luke's Health–Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston, Texas - Cooley Auditorium 6:00 pm

Donor Awareness 

 Heart Exchange Support Group members participate in donor awareness activities and educational activities... 

Our Board

 

2023 - 2024

Membership requires no dues, only a desire to further the Heart Exchange's objectives of patient support...

In the News

Facebook

Follow and like us on 

Facebook and get up to date information about our meetings and donor awareness activities... 

Helpfull Links

Virtual Information

We have a list of reading materials and helpful links that will help provide you some guidance and information...

Testimonials

The Heart Exchange provides significant emotional support for our patients and their families as they await heart transplantation.

Denton A. Cooley, MD

Former President and Surgeon-in-Chief, Texas Heart Institute

Contact

The Heart Exchange exists for the benefit of transplant patients (Heart, Kidney, Liver, and Lung)

Members are transplant recipients, assist device recipients, those in need of transplants or devices, their families and friends and the nurses who work with them. Its members are also volunteers...

We’ve been where you are. We know what its like to be told, “You need a transplant.”

We know what its like to wait and we know what its like when the wait is over. The life ahead of you can be wonderful. And we would like to share our perspective with you.  Just contact us or If you are a patient at CHI St. Luke's Health–Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston, Texas, just tell your nurse that you’d like us to visit and we will be there.

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