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Battle Against Time: 4-Year-Old Needs Heart Transplant

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Jessica Kartalija 3 Jessica Kartalija
Jessica Kartalija joined the Eyewitness News team during the summer of...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Every day–every hour–could make a difference in the life of little Madison Parrott. It’s a battle against time for the 4-year-old, who is at the top of the waiting list for a lifesaving heart transplant.

Jessica Kartalija has the emotional story of Maddy’s second chance.

Madison Parrott is a bundle of energy and a natural for the camera. But don’t let her happy face fool you. Madison is in the fight of her life at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center. Her little heart is failing.

In her short life, Madison has already had three major surgeries to try to fix the complicated heart problem she was born with.

Madison’s mom is by her side 24/7, but she misses the rest of her family who divide their time between the hospital and home in Middle River.

“I never really feel like [this isn't fair]. My faith in God has just kept me going. I’m more thankful that I am able to take care of her,” said Dana Parrott.

Now Madison is in a race against time. Her heart is growing weaker and she needs a transplant to survive.

“A lot of things, you know. Initially, it’s like heartbreak and this can’t be. But then I get myself back together and let’s go, we’re going to do this and I put on my strong face for Madison and we just do it,” Parrott said.

Last year in Maryland, there was only one heart transplant in a child between the ages of one and five. Doctors say young donors are difficult to find. Transplants are always the last option. Right now, Madison is one of only two children in her age group awaiting a heart transplant.

Dr. William Ravekes says Madison is at the top of the list for the transplant but the waiting is tough.

“A perfect match is hard to come by. I think the likelihood of her getting a good match is good,” Ravekes said. “The most frustrating thing is when I tell you I don’t know. I don’t know when we may get a call for Madison’s heart.”

“I know it can take weeks, months. But we’re hoping it will happen sooner rather than later,” Parrott said.

So Madison gets a second chance at life.

“Just for her to grow up, to go to her senior prom, to graduate college, to get married,” Parrott said. “Just live a normal life.”

We’ll keep you updated on Maddy’s second chance.

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