Carly's Story

Name: Carly
Born: April 16, 1993
Heart Condition: Aortic Stenosis, Bicuspid Aortic Valve, Aortic Regurgitation, Enlarged Ascending Aorta and Aortic Root.

"Carly's Story" - as told by herself

I was born on April 16th 1993, 3 weeks early. The doctors heard a murmur and decided to do an echo-cardiogram to see what was going on. After the echo I was diagnosed with Aortic Stenosis and a bicuspid aortic valve, as well as a hole in my heart. The hole eventually closed but the valve problem was still there.

As a kid I didn't have many restrictions and my heart was holding up quite well. Around 10 years old I developed aortic regurgitation, and by 14 I also had enlargement of my ascending aorta and aortic root. I was experiencing a lot of symptoms such as shortness of breath, fatigue, chest pain, and palpitations.

My cardiologist did not believe me when I told him about my symptoms because my echo looked fine. Finally after a couple years I switched cardiologist to find one that could give me some answers for the way I was feeling. The cardiologist ran many tests including a cardiac cath.

It was this test that showed my valve was severely narrowed and severely leaking. There was nothing left to do but open-heart surgery. So at the age of 19 I went in for my first surgery, they ended up repairing my valve. When they did my surgery they found out my valve was so severely calcified that it was functioning as a unicuspid valve. They were able to repair the valve, but I will still need to have more open-heart surgeries in my life which will include a valve replacement as well as a repair or replacement of my aorta. Its back to the wait and see game. I see my cardiologist 1x a year for an echo and ekg, they expect that I will need another surgery in the next 2-3 years.

Cakes From Grace made a cake for Carly's 21st Birthday in April with a "My Canvas" cake theme including Carly's favorite colors. Next Month Carly will be celebrating her 3rd Heart Anniversary and we will be making her another special cake for the occasion! We are so glad you enjoyed your cake Carly!