Mom Of Teen Denied Heart Transplant: ‘He Deserves A Second Chance’

Source: Linda Carroll / NBC News

Fifteen-year-old Anthony Stokes’ heart is failing. But even though it may only last a few more months, doctors are refusing to even put him on a transplant list. The reason, they say: They don’t think he’ll follow through with the medical regimen needed to keep him alive after a heart transplant.

The teen showed up at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta four weeks ago, complaining of shortness of breath and chest pains. It didn’t take long for doctors at the pediatric hospital to diagnose an enlarged heart – and to tell him that there would be no help for it.

In a segment that aired on TODAY Tuesday, Anthony’s mother, Melencia Hamilton, told NBC that the hospital refused to even put her son’s name on the transplant list. A letter from Anthony’s doctors says, “Anthony is not a transplant candidate due to having a history of noncompliance.”

What doctors are saying is that they don’t think Anthony will be willing or able to follow through with aftercare. They’re concerned, for example, that he won’t take prescribed medications or that he’ll miss follow-up appointments.

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