NJ Family's Holiday Wish After 214 Surgeries? To Be Together - KMSP-TV

ADVERTISEMENT
Bookmark and Share

NJ Family's Holiday Wish After 214 Surgeries? To Be Together

Posted: Updated:
SEWELL, N.J. -

A New Jersey family wants nothing more than to be together for the holiday. They're apart right now as their teenage daughter is being treated in California for a medical condition.

The condition has caused her to undergo more than 200 brain surgeries and, as FOX 29's Thalia Perez reports, they always hope each one will be her last.

Megan Healy says she wants nothing other than her younger sister Michaela home and healthy this Christmas. Michaela suffers from hydrocephalus; most people know it as water on the brain. She's had 214 brain surgeries in her lifetime. In the last eight days alone, she's had five. Each time Michaela undergoes a surgery, it's to replace one or several of the seven shunts in her brain.

"It's a chronic illness that emotionally and financially as a parent you'll do anything to switch places with your kid," Megan said.

It's a typical night at the Healy household in New Jersey. Sisters Megan and Cameron are 'Face-timing" with their mom and Michaela who just came out of surgery this afternoon.

Michaela and her mother travel back and forth between their home in Sewell, New Jersey and the Children's Hospital Of Central California where she's seen by the same neurosurgeon she's had since infancy.

There's a great deal of uncertainty with Michaela's illness because at a moment's notice Michaela can feel sick and they will head back to California for surgery. Her dad says it's not easy.

"You can't walk around with your head down. You try to go to work every day and keep things as normal as you possibly can," Michael said.

There's no cure for hydrocephalus and Michaela's family says they accept the journey that's ahead of them. 

The family takes Michaela's illness in stride and try to make life as normal as possible for everyone. However, it's tough this holiday season having her and Mom so far away and not knowing if she will be able to return in time for Christmas. Dad says they spend on average $2500 roundtrip on expenses and have spent 70k over the last 3-years on medical expenses and incidentals. They have a great deal of support from their community and money raised from fundraisers covers most of the expenses.

For now, they're focusing on family time together this Christmas, as Michaela just landed in Philadelphia and will return to her family to be with them for the holidays.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Only On Fox: Arsonist On The Loose In South Jersey Town

    Only On Fox: Arsonist On The Loose In South Jersey Town

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 4:45 PM EDT2014-04-16 20:45:07 GMT
    It started with a brush fire, then another fire at the rear of this home on Monroe Street and finally a blaze that swept through this vacant home up the block, just a few feet away from where Emma Sethman
    It started with a brush fire, then another fire at the rear of this home on Monroe Street and finally a blaze that swept through this vacant home up the block, just a few feet away from where Emma Sethman
  • 1 Injured After Skydiving Accident In New Jersey

    1 Injured After Skydiving Accident In New Jersey

    1 Injured After Skydiving Accident In New Jersey

    Sunday, April 20 2014 4:46 PM EDT2014-04-20 20:46:17 GMT
    A person was injuredafter askydiving accident in Gloucester, Washington Township on Sunday afternoon.Police say the parachute did not open. The person landed on Tuckahoe Road right across from the United Artists movie theatre, which is about a half mile from Cross Keys Airport.Police are currently on the scene still investigating.Stay with Fox 29 for any updates on this story.
    A person was injuredafter askydiving accident in Gloucester, Washington Township on Sunday afternoon.Police say the parachute did not open. The person landed on Tuckahoe Road right across from the United Artists movie theatre, which is about a half mile from Cross Keys Airport.Police are currently on the scene still investigating.Stay with Fox 29 for any updates on this story.
  • Police Search For Man In Collingdale Hit-And-Run

    Police Search For Man In Collingdale Hit-And-Run

    Sunday, April 20 2014 4:44 PM EDT2014-04-20 20:44:03 GMT
    A man was struck by a SUV in Collingdale early Saturday morning. Police responded to reports of a hit and run on the 900 block of Bedford Avenue around 5:30 a.m. Upon arrival, they found a Range Rover crashed into a Chrysler 300 and a man was also laying the lawn of 919 Bedford Avenue covered in blood. The victim was transported to Crozer Chester Medical Center. He is in surgery with severe head and severe lower b...
    A man was struck by a SUV in Collingdale early Saturday morning. Police responded to reports of a hit and run on the 900 block of Bedford Avenue around 5:30 a.m. Upon arrival, they found a Range Rover crashed into a Chrysler 300 and a man was also laying the lawn of 919 Bedford Avenue covered in blood. The victim was transported to Crozer Chester Medical Center. He is in surgery with severe head and severe lower b...
Powered by WorldNow

KMSP-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices