My mother passed away in September of 2016 after a 23 year battle with pulmonary fibrosis. The MGH team was an integral part of her survival for so many of those years, including the last few. She desperately needed a lung transplant for years and before being admitted to the hospital, spent the last few years carrying around an oxygen tank to assist her breathing. This included her last year of work as a teacher and during the trip of a lifetime around the country by car that her and my father had always wanted to go on. My mother was admitted to the MGH ER in August of 2014, basically near death; without the hard work of the teams involved that night, we would not have been able to have her for another two plus years. She was admitted to the ICU and within a few weeks she finally had the lung transplant she had been waiting for! Unfortunately there were complications and things did not go as planned. She spent the next 446 days in MGH, almost all of them spent in the ICU unit.
I honestly could not believe all the advances and care she received at MGH. The most amazing machine was the lung bypass machine, which is a giant system that bypasses the lungs so her heart would pump but her lungs would not be needed. She was on this system for a long time and one of the nurses said there is only one other hospital in the world that has this system! She was also on a system that recirculated her blood after enriching the platelets! There aren't enough words to describe the ups and downs, her times in comas, her inability to speak because of trachs, etc but the main point to get across is how much she loved all the nurses, doctors and technicians that took such amazing care of her, so many of whom came to her wake and funeral.
This will be my eighth marathon and third Boston Marathon. My last one was the 2017 Boston Marathon which I also ran for MGH!