Blood drive held May 8 for Baton Rouge baby with heart defect

Aubrey Rose (Source: Family)
Aubrey Rose (Source: Family)

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Little Aubrey Rose was born with a congenital heart defect, a hole in her heart, meaning her body can't get the oxygen it needs. At just eight days old, the baby girl underwent a 16-hour surgery, the first of three she will likely have before her third birthday.

There's one more complication. Aubrey has undergone more than a dozen blood transfusions, but she has a rare blood type, O-negative, shared with only 7 percent of people in the U.S.

In January, the people of Baton Rouge came together during a series of blood drives. Since the, her grandmother tells us there's been one complication after another.

"Last week we were told that she needed a heart transplant and after over 40 doctors reviewed her case, they decided to go ahead with another open heart surgery that is very risky," said Kristi DeLeon. "Getting a heart transplant would be very hard at her age and with her blood type and they say she can't wait that long."

Aubrey had surgery Monday, May 8. Her family held a last-minute blood drive at All Star Ford in Prairieville. They urgently need O-negative donors.

According to the Blood Center, one donation can help up to three people by dividing the donation into platelets, plasma, and red blood cells. Even donors who do not share Aubrey's blood type can help the family by donating blood to the Blood Center in her name. For every donation given, the Blood Center gives her family some financial aid to help with things such as travel expenses while they go back and forth from the hospital.

According to DeLeon, Aubrey's surgery Monday went well and she is in stable condition. DeLeon goes on to say she's still completely sedated and on a ventilator, and her chest is still open to accommodate for swelling or if any problems arise, but doctors say she is doing well and if she continues to improve, they could possibly close her up on Friday and then start waking her up soon after.

Aubrey's family has also set up a YouCaring fund. Click here to donate.

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