Woman receives heart transplant

Author: wink news

This Mother’s Day is special for a woman who was fighting for her life just months ago.

Loretta Thomas feels lucky to be able to watch her grandson grow up.

The 55-year-old math teacher had an enlarged heart and was taking medicine, but it wasn’t enough. She collapsed at school.

“I went into a classroom for a few minutes and I passed out. I went into cardiac arrest,” said Thomas.

Thomas needed a new heart.

Health experts estimate more than 200,000 people could benefit from a heart transplant every year. But only about 2,400 get one.

“We are talking about 1 percent of individuals that may benefit from a heart transplant are actually getting it,” said Dr. Snehal Patel.

Thomas was one of them. She waited just two months before a heart became available.

Her daughter, who’s a doctor, had to convince her mother to have surgery. Doctors performed the transplant at Montefiore Medical Center in January.

Now Thomas and her growing family are getting ready to celebrate Mother’s Day.

“We try to do more things together. We try to celebrate all the moments,” said Thomas’ daughter Kim Rutherford.

“I feel like I’ve been given another chance, and that there is a purpose for me to be alive,” said Thomas.

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