Hard to Breathe

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Treatment of ARDS involves significant medical intervention to heal the lungs, which can often cause lasting complications.

When Daphne Edgren, a 18-year-old, promising, art student arrived in Chicago, her dreams of becoming an animator seemed within reach. But with classes about to start,  she started having trouble breathing. “I’ve never experienced anything like it. Every single day my chest was getting tighter and tighter,” the a Colorado native recalled.

As it turned out, despite being a non-smoker who led an active daily life devoid of any serious health problems, Daphne had a life threatening condition and probably wouldn’t survive.

Ankit Bharat, MD, a Northwestern thoracic surgeon knew Daphne’s case was serious, “Of 100 patients, only 30 of those patients will make it out of the hospital in any decent shape. The majority of these patients end up going to a nursing facility or rehab center because they`re quite debilitated. ”

Dr. Bharat and his team’s innovative use of ambulatory ECMO saved Daphne’s young life. After a month in the hospital and more than two weeks on ECMO Daphne was able to be released.

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