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Child Life helps Maddie through heart surgery

Meet Maddie and learn how Child Life helped her through heart surgery at Mary Bridge.


By Jen Rittenhouse

Last May, television host Jimmy Kimmel announced that his son was born with a congenital heart defect called Tetralogy of Fallot. It is a rare and complex condition, there are fewer than 20,000 cases each year. 

Children born with Tetralogy of Fallot essentially have four heart defects that cause oxygen-poor blood to flow out of the heart and into the rest of the body.

Tetralogy of Fallot is treatable with surgery and ongoing care. Find out from Mary Bridge patient, Maddie Strate, what it's like to live with a heart condition and have open-heart surgery at 11-years old — and how Child Life helped her get through some difficult experiences at Mary Bridge.