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Stories of hope

Samantha Robinson: My story

Samantha with hand up, waving, from hospital bed

I had my first heart transplant at age five in December of 2000. I was diagnosed with restrictive cardiomyopathy at age three. I was on the list for 35 days before we got the call. I don’t remember much, but transplant life is the only life I know.

I did well with my first transplant until early 2020, when I was diagnosed with CAV. That was when I was told I would eventually end up needing another heart transplant. Slowly, my symptoms progressed and come July 2022, I ended up having two ischemic attacks that put me in hospital waiting for a new heart.

While they did the transplant work up, they found my kidneys were failing and I was formally listed for a heart and kidney. I ended up having my second heart transplant on July 25 and my kidney transplant July 26, 2022.

I had a rough recovery after the surgeries, I had to be on CRRT for eight days because I was in fluid overload. I also went into complete heart block a few days post transplant and my heart never recovered and I received a pacemaker. I also fought antibody mediated rejection for weeks post op.

As of March 2023, I am almost eight months post op and I am so grateful to both of my donors and their families.

Hand-drawn heart
Heart, Kidney, Stories, UNOS Ambassador

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