Caden Konecny's Story

Caden Konecny's Story

Ashlea Konecny and her husband, Paul, stayed at the Ronald McDonald House® in Kansas City for a total of three months as their baby boy, Caden fought for his life.

The Konecny family’s adventure began in January 2007, after doctors discovered the heart defect and transferred him to Kansas City for further testing and treatment.

The Konecny’s spent a week staying at the House in Kansas City while doctors determined the extent of two-month-old Caden’s heart defect.  He was diagnosed with Truncus Arteriosus Type II, an extremely rare type of Congenital Heart Defect.  Caden had a 15mm hole between the ventricles in his heart and the only thing that could save his life was open-heart surgery.

Caden spent the next month getting as healthy as possible before his surgery.  He was just three months old when the doctors successfully performed the open-heart surgery to repair the “trunk” of the Truncus Arteriosus as well as the hole between his ventricles.  A few days after his surgery, Caden crashed and the doctors called a “code blue.”  After Caden was stabilized, the Konecny’s spent another three weeks at the House while Caden recovered.

Caden released from the hospital, only to return two days later.  He was in congestive heart failure again and doctors soon found out that when Caden crashed after his first surgery, he had ripped the hole back open to 8mm.

Caden was five months old when he underwent his second open-heart surgery.  His small, weak body could not handle the second surgery and the next morning, his heart stopped beating again.  The doctors performed CPR on him for about an hour before they decided to put him on the ECMO machine, which functioned as an external heart.