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This fundraiser ended on 01/01/13

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The family and friends of Brooke McKinney are uniting to raise money for Brooke's liver transplant. Please show your support!

Brooke McKinney was born August 28th a seemingly happy, healthy baby. Six days later Brooke become lethargic and uninterested in nursing, her concerned parents Jimmy and Jen took her to the doctor.  On a misdiagnosis Brooke was sent to the Kapiolani Children's Hospitol where doctors discoverd Brooke had extremely elevated levels of PKU. Phenylketonuria (PKU) is a rare condition in which a baby is born without the ability to properly break down an amino acid called phenylalanine.

Further testing relieved Brooke suffered from Type 1 Citrullinemia an inherited Urea Cycle disorder that causes ammonia and other toxic substances to accumulate in the blood. The Urea Cycle is a sequence of chemical reactions that take place in the liver cells.  A deficiency of one of the six enzymes from the liver cause the disorder. These enzymes are responsible for removing ammonia from the blood stream. The urea cycle involves a series of biochemical steps in which nitrogen, a waste product of protein metabolism, is removed from the blood and converted to a compound called urea in the blood. Normally, the urea is transferred into the urine and removed from the body. In urea cycle disorders, the nitrogen accumulates in the form of ammonia, a highly toxic substance, resulting in hyperammonemia (elevated blood ammonia). Ammonia then reaches the brain through the blood, where it can cause irreversible brain damage, coma and/or death.  

Brooke was immediately given Hemodialysis to remove the toxic Ammonia from her blood, given a respirator and sedated into a medically induced coma.  At one point Brooke was hooked up to more than 30 machines.  In short, baby Brooke was extremely sick.

But Brooke is a fighter.  In a few short weeks Brooke has made remarkable progress, she is breathing on her own, been taken off most her machines and has moved out of the PICU.  And most wonderfully her parents can hold her once again.

As much wonderful progress as she has made, Brooke has a long road of recovery ahead.  The Urea Cycle disorder is so severe she will need a liver transplant.  Her family, dad Jimmy mom Jen and big brother Milo have moved from their home on Maui to live next to the Kapiolani Hospital on Oahu.  Brooke will need to weigh 22lbs before a liver transplant will be possible. At present she is on a 24 hour feeding tube and doctors are hoping to schedule her transplant by the time she is 6 to 9 months old. At which point she will travel to Stanford Medical Center where she will stay for at least a month undergoing her transplant and observation.

Brooke will need to be on medicine for her entire life so that her body does not reject her transplanted liver.  

Brooke and her family are incredibly grateful for all the love and support they have received.  And thank every one for their continued support!
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