KIDS WITH COURAGE UPDATE: Ari Chambers-Baltz finds a donor match
ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – There is a happy update from our April “Kids with Courage” spotlight where we were introduced to 22-month-old Ari Chambers-Baltz.
Ari has a very rare genetic disorder called Hyper IgM syndrome, which means he doesn’t have an immune system to fight viruses. He needs a stem cell or bone marrow transplant before he experiences organ damage.
When our Caitlin Alexander introduced us to Ari last month, there was still no matches for Ari.
Ari’s family began hosting “Be the Match” drives across Minnesota, Wisconsin, and elsewhere, where they swabbed people’s cheeks to run them through the national registry and search for a match. After thousands of swabs from people, they finally found a match.
We received an update from Ari’s grandmother Sharon Chambers Tuesday that said they have identified a 9 out of 10 match for Ari and he will begin his transplant journey at the University of Minnesota on May 22, 2023.
His grandmother said he will undergo a week of testing followed by two weeks of chemotherapy which is then followed by a bone marrow transplant. He will be in the hospital for 100 days with day 1 beginning the day of the bone marrow transplant.
The donor is a 25-year-old woman.
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