On March 16, in the middle of the COVID-19 outbreak, Kamilla’s mother was getting ready for the arrival of his first child. She and her family didn’t have a clue as to what awaited them. There weren’t any hints of complications all the way through to her 36th week of pregnancy, when Kamilla was delivered. That’s where their story with Sainte-Justine started.

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© Véronique Lavoie

Kamilla lacked oxygen at birth. The neonatal team stabilized her as quickly as possible, thanks to the state-of-the-art equipment in the NICU, including the respirator acquired by the hospital because of donors like you. 

In the first few hours of her life, she started to gain weight. Much faster than normal. There was no doubt in her doctors’ minds: she had congenital nephrotic syndrome, a rare kidney disorder. In the weeks that followed, she was put through a battery of tests to identify the cause. The origin turned out to be genetic. Kamilla’s parents were both carriers of the gene. 

Her kidneys couldn’t filter blood properly, allowing large quantities of protein to be lost into her urine. As a result, she couldn’t eliminate water and salt very efficiently. The resulting accumulation caused severe swelling. Daily albumin (protein) infusions were the only way to help in eliminating salt and limit water retention. 

Now four months old, Kamilla is doing well, despite her underlying health problems. She will receive albumin treatments for as long as she can. Because there still isn’t anything else available to cure her kidneys. For Kamilla, a transplant is the only option

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© Véronique Lavoie
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Illness Never Takes a Holiday at Sainte-Justine

This summer, her family is counting on you to support state-of-the-art research and treatment at Sainte-Justine. 

I’ve always had every confidence in the expertise of the teams at Sainte-Justine. I was born here myself, and this is where I wanted my daughter to come into the world. I know that donors are responsible for some amazing medical breakthroughs. And now I really get just how important that is.

Kamilla’s mother

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© Véronique Lavoie

For children who, like Kamilla, depend on the excellence at Sainte-Justine to grow up healthy, your generosity makes all the difference. 

Thank you for giving the families of Sainte-Justine wings this summer with your love. ♥