NFT Patient's Milestone Transplant

October 9, 2008

It is hard to imagine that this vibrant 19-year-old girl was once fighting for her life, but it's true. In 1990, little 3-week-old Courtney Williams was diagnosed with alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (Alpha-1), a rare disorder that can damage patients' lungs or liver. After discovering she had developed incurable cirrhosis of the liver, doctors knew her only chance for survival was a liver transplant.

Little Courtney, awaiting a liver transplant in 1990.

Courtney's mother would serve as the living donor for the transplant. A milestone in transplantation at the time, the first successful living donor transplant had only occurred one year earlier. But before she could receive the transplant, the hospital required $150,000. Courtney's family came to NFT for guidance and support to raise the funds they desperately needed.

With the help of NFT and a supportive group of volunteers, Courtney's family raised the entire amount in just five short months. Later that year, doctors removed a portion of her mother's healthy liver to offer Courtney a second chance at life.

Today, Courtney is the picture of good health. She has even participated in the recent U.S. Transplant Games in Pittsburgh, where she competed in athletic events with other transplant survivors.