Fundraising goal: 295 million yen
Compensation and advance payment for treatment at Columbia University: 213 million yen
Medication costs and medical reserves: 19.5 million yen
Travel costs (chartered plane and ambulance): 56 million yen
Other costs to stay for rehabilitation and administration costs of the secretariat: 6.5 million yen
About the Disease
Himari-chan (Himari Morikawa), who lives in Idogaya, Midori-ward, Yokohama city, Kanagawa, has been suffering from a serious heart disease called “Dilated Cardiomyopathy” and is now hospitalized at the University of Tokyo Hospital.
She was born as the daughter of her father, Koki Morikawa (born in Uruma-city, Okinawa), and mother, Kanako Morikawa (born in Fuchu-city, Tokyo). When she was 2 months old, she suddenly developed cyanosis and was taken to a hospital by ambulance. She has been hospitalized since then for one and half years and has not been allowed to go back to her home. Although she has overcome a number of severe heart failures, she still needs a heart transplant to regain her health under the current medicine.
Himari-chan’s heart almost does not move by itself. She barely keeps alive with a pediatric ventricular assist device. There were only four cases of infant heart transplants in Japan in the past five years, and the possibility of a domestic transplant is very close to zero under the current circumstance. The waiting period with this ventricular assist device installed should not be basically longer than one year. After passing one year, there is always a risk of a cerebral infarction caused by an infectious disease or a blood clot. She must receive the heart transplant as soon as possible.
Request for a donation from “Himari-chan wo Sukuu Kai”
Columbia University Medical Center (New York, USA) has agreed to accept her for the heart transplant surgery. However, there are no medical care subsidies available for the hospitals in the United States, and all the actual medical care costs must be covered individually. Himari-chan, who is implanted with the ventricular assist device, is not able to take a normal airplane but needs a special airplane to travel. The total amount of the costs of the medical care and the travel is about 300 million yen, which is not the amount of money that can be paid by a general household. In order to allow Himari-chan to receive a heart transplant, finish the rehabilitation, and be healthy again, we need to ask for your kindness. This “Himari-chan wo Sukuu Kai (a group to save Himari-chan)” will strive with our best to help her go to the United States in November. Please understand this situation, and we look forward to receiving your warm support and cooperation. We would like to ask for your support and cooperation from the bottom of our heart.
The pediatric ventricular assist device is directly connected with her heart through a pump (equipped in November 2015, and 8 months have already passed)
Dilated cardiomyopathy: A serious disease as a heart suffers an impaired pump function with a replacement of active cells with non-active cells and cannot pump blood efficiently. Once it gets serious, there is no other way but to have a heart transplant.
Donation through bank transfer:
Please tell that the bank transfer fee is exempted.
Name of financial institutions/ Account type/Account number/ Account name/Exempted bank transfer fee
* There is a special treatment at the other financial institutions.
Donation through credit card:
“Himari-chan wo Sukuu Kai” also accepts your donation through credit cards. Please view our webpage for details.
For more information, please view the Save-Himari-chan Web site at http//himarichan.com.
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Himari Morikawa, who was born on January 13, 2015 as the daughter of Koki Morikawa and Kanako Morikawa, now suffers from a serious heart disease called “Dilated Cardiomyopathy,” a condition in which the heart becomes enlarged and the heart muscle becomes thinner, leading to a severe cardiac arrest. The disease is recognized as one of the “specified diseases” in Japan.
•Nickname: Hima-chan, Himari
•Favorite food: Banana-pudding and Oden
•Least favorite food: Something flaky
•Favorite color: Pink
•She is practicing to stand up by herself and learning how to talk.
History up to now
Born with a weight of 2700 grams.
She suddenly suffered a difficulty in breathing and was transported to a hospital by ambulance. She was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy.
She had been equipped with a ventilator for about 8 months with a hope to get recovered by the medical treatment in a bedridden state with her limbs constrained. At the time, her body weight was only 4kg.
Once a slight light was seen on the medical treatment. The ventilator was extubated, but her condition was worsened. The ventilator was intubated again. The medical treatment was given up.
She was transferred to the University of Tokyo Hospital as her condition was judged as dangerous. She was installed with a pediatric ventricular assist device, EXCOR, of Berlin Heart.
Her parents attend her at the hospital.
Her parents decided to have a heart transplant overseas as it is least likely to have the transplant surgery in Japan.
•7 months have passed since she had the pediatric artificial auxiliary heart. Himari-chan has to have the pump exchanged very frequently as she is prone to infections and blood clots. She needs to have the transplant as quickly as possible.
Message from her parents
First of all, we would like to thank all of you to support us to save our daughter, Himari. We very much appreciate the kindness of those people who have helped establish this “group to save Himari-chan” by taking their precious times.
She is diagnosed with a disease called “Dilated Cardiomyopathy,” which will not probably be cured with the oral medicine, but needs a heart transplant.
She was born on January 13, 2015, a very cold day in winter. She was full of energy, drunk milk a lot and slept a lot. We really loved our daughter.
Meanwhile on last March 21, she suddenly developed cyanosis and was sent to a hospital by ambulance. That was the time when she was two months old and her long hospitalization life has begun. From that day, Himari has been spending her time at the hospital for the whole year until now from the age of 2 months without returning home even once.
Himari stayed at the hospital in Yokohama until she became 10 months old.
She always needed to wear a ventilator. She needed to drink milk from a tube through her nose. She became too skinny due to dietary restrictions, but she bravely fought with the condition until the limit of her physical strength, betting on the possibility that she becomes well again with the medication.
A drip immediately leaked from her thin blood vessels. It sometimes took three hours to replace the drip. She continued crying as a needle kept being inserted into her in order to look for her vessel even if her face was turned to pure white with a full of sweat. She was equipped with a ventilator all the times with her hands and feet tied up because of the equipment. We even could not hug her for more than six months under this condition.
The ventilator prevented her from making a voice, so she even did not make a sound when she was crying. She was bedridden all the times, and she could not even hold up her head.
It was really a painful period for us as we could not fulfill her desire at all even she cried a lot with tears.
In October 2015, it was finally decided to try to extubate the respirator. Himari went to the ICU at the time of the best condition. She weighted only 4Kg without any muscle at the time even she was 9 months old. She could not even breath by herself, her heart was suddenly worsened, and she also began to have arrhythmia as we were afraid.
Himari’s heart, which had been treated with medication over a long period of time, became worsened all too soon. The possible choice to save Himari became only a heart transplant.
It was a very painful choice for us, but we were not even able to give up the life of our daughter as we have seen Himari who endured the medical treatment for a long time and overcome critical situations again and again. She just desperately wanted to live without hesitation.
In November 2015, she could luckily have a ventricular assist device for children named “EXCOR” of Berlin Heart that was just approved in previous year’s August in Japan, and only several units were available at the time.
There had been even no vacancy in the clinical trial up to the timing, so it was very fortunate for her to be able to have this device at this timing.
She was immediately transferred to the University of Tokyo Hospital and had an operation to install EXCOR. We now attend our daughter during her hospitalization.
Thanks to this attached device, she does not need a respirator anymore and does not have to follow dietary restrictions. She started to live life like a human for the first time at the age of 1-year-old.
She can drink milk from her mouth, and we can sleep next to Himari and can hug her at any time. All these things were not allowed before, so we can feel happiness all the more.
However, the attachment of this device is only a bridge to a heart transplant.
This device is connected with her heart with two thick tubes sticking out from her waist and connected to refrigerator-sized big equipment and allows her to move only in the area of about 2 meters.
The device also involves several risks, and its original expiration period is three months. The probability of complication occurrence is 40%. It is also said that the longer it is used, the higher the rate of death becomes according to certain data.
Complications include infections and blood clots caused by the existence of the device in the body (the blood is hardened in the pump, scatters in the body and causes paralysis and cerebral infarction) and cerebral hemorrhage caused by a drug she is drinking in order to prevent it.
Himari chronically suffers from infections and is prone to blood clots. She may die from complications if she just waits in this state here in Japan.
We had been waiting for some time in Japan and realized that the number of donors in Japan is close to zero and the possibility of domestic transplant seems to be hopeless.
The cost of an overseas transplant will not be able to be paid possibly by our family because no effective insurance is available.
It might be a selfish choice of the parents.
We also have anxiety that we do not know what will happen in our future, but we could not be able to give up without doing anything.
We just wanted to live with our family together. That is only our wish.
She was able to live until now with the help of all the people around us who we met after she became the disease including doctors, nurses, and those who have launched this group to save our Himari
We will definitely tell this fact to our daughter when she grows up. We want her to be a person who can cherish the feeling of gratitude and is able to contribute to society.
To save our Himari, the only way for us is to ask for your kindness.
We are aware that we are asking for a selfish hope, but please help us for Himari to be able to play and laugh like the other children of the same age. Please lend us your power. We really ask for your support. Thank you.