My name’s Salma, I’m currently 18 and from originally from Egypt. When I was almost 5 years old, a traumatic accident happened leaving me needing a small intestine transplant. My family and I were on vacation, and we decided to go to the swimming pool we usually go to. They has installed a new toddler pool, that barely had 2 feet of water so it didn’t come very high up unless I was sitting down. I was playing in the pool, when I noticed a suction valve at the bottom of the swimming pool. Obviously I told the lifeguard, and all he said was “We got it sweetie, go back to playing” being a 4 year old, I went back to playing. Little did I know, that would have changed my life forever. I was just playing around, when I slipped and accidentally sat on the suction at the bottom of the pool. The lifeguard jumped in trying to pull me out, he couldn’t because the suction was too strong, until someone was finally able to pull me out, but I didn’t come out alone. After I was carried out, dangling from me was something, a red orange color. From the trauma, my mom thought it was my bathing suit until she got closer. She held me in her hands, as well as my intestines. My small intestines got sucked out from my rectum from how strong the suction was. We rushed to the nearest hospital where I was rushed to the OR. They had to cut out all of my small intestines, connect my large intestines, and close me up. They told my mom that I have 2 weeks to live, unless I receive a small bowl transplant. Which at the time(August of 2007) was not done anywhere except Pittsburgh, PA. We got in contact with the hospital, and since we aren’t citizens, they told us the surgery would cost $350k. We had nothing else to do… we weren’t rich, but we did our best. Went on talk shows, in Egypt, reached out to whoever we could possibly think of, as well as, write letters, and of course pray a miracle comes through. We waited and waited. One night, we were watching a show on TV that was live, and we got a phone call when we answered, we noticed it was the show we were watching letting us know our miracle has happened and someone was donating the money for my surgery. of course we were OVER THE MOON, but the next challenge was getting a visa to come to the United States which us a whole different story. Thankfully, we got our visa and came to the United States. I got evaluated for a small bowl transplant and was placed on the transplant waiting list. (TRANSPLANT IS NEVER A SCHEDULED PROCEDURE Because you have to be placed on the list for the right match) we waited a total of 18 months, then we got the call that my new organs are available. After an 8 hour surgery, I was moved up to the ICU for recovery. Sadly that didn’t go as planned. After 2 weeks from receiving the organ, my body rejected it. Of course there’s many medications that were given to treat the rejection, but it kept re-accuring. The transplanted organ lasted 6 months then it was removed due to severe rejection, PTLD which is CANCER, my bladder was ruptured in the process, AND my large intestines (my colon) was also bad from how bad the infection and rejection was. The decision was made to remove the organ if I were to survive. No one thought I’d make it though the removal, but it was out only chance. After removing the organs, they had to leave my abdomen open from how bad the infection was since 2009, I’ve been living with my abdomen open. It has healed some, but will never fully heal. Since I don’t have any intestines, there’s absolutely no way for me to eat anything by mouth(sometimes I’d chew the food for taste then spit it out. I can also drink anything, but it will come right out, which means it doesn’t absorb at all) so I am on TPN( Total Parenteral nutrition) which has kept me alive all these years, but at the same time, Causes sever liver damage. I receive my TPN through a central line port that goes to my heart. years after transplant, I’m currently needing a 5 organ multivisceral transplant( small intestines, large intestines, liver, pancreas, and a stomach) it’s been such a long road financial wise since I didn’t and didn’t qualify for medical insurance, but now it’s a reality due to being able to have insurance – thank God. Now I’m currently waiting on the transplant waiting list for the 5 organ multivisceral transplant. Again, a transplant is NEVER a scheduled procedure. I need all 5 organs from the same person at the SAME time, so it does have to be a deceased donor.. due to me having so many blood transfusions in the past, my body has a lot of antibodies which will make finding a match super difficult. The transplant process is so so hard, difficult, complicated, and if haven’t gone though it, wouldn’t understand. All I ask is you Please take the time to read this article that explains how the transplant process works…/prog…/intestine/process I love you all so much. I wouldn’t be here without all of you, and I truly couldn’t thank you all enough for the overwhelming love and support!