Kidney-Intestine Recipient Regains Independence
Once confined to intravenous feedings, Andrea Slover can now eat freely, thanks to new intestines and a kidney.
Andrea "Andi" Slover at age 63 is finally enjoying her retirement. Despite having Crohn’s disease — a chronic inflammatory disease of the intestines — for more than 40 years, Andi has lived an active life.
For 23 years she worked for the federal government and was a classification specialist for the National Guard. However, five years ago, Andi’s disease became debilitating.
"I couldn’t eat so I relied on TPN (intravenous nutrition)," Andi said. "I was very weak, I felt confined since I always had to be near a bathroom. It was awful."
After many surgeries that failed to help, Andi lost hope of having a higher quality of life. But after meeting with the intestinal transplant team at The Recanati/Miller Transplant Institute (RMTI), Andi, her husband, Pete, and their three children decided that transplantation could give her a chance at a better life.
In the summer of 2009, Andi received a small intestine, a large intestine and a kidney transplant at The Mount Sinai Medical Center. She was the first person to receive a large intestine at Mount Sinai. This summer she plans on enjoying fresh fruits, babysit her grandchildren and go on boating trips with her family.
"I now have my independence," Andi said. "I am enormously grateful to the Sinai team. I am going to write a letter to my donor family and thank them for giving me my independence and my life back."