Akiva '07 and Amanda ’07BC Zablocki welcomed their first child, Idan, into the world last July. As they celebrate his first birthday, they are fighting for his life after he was diagnosed with a very rare and life-threatening immune deficiency disorder that affects only 2 in 1,000,000 people.
In April, Idan started breathing very quickly, but there were no other symptoms to cause alarm. His parents went back and forth to the doctor, everyone believing it was a sneaky virus that would run its course and go away. When two weeks passed and Idan began looking fatigued, his parents took him back to the pediatrician for a second x-ray. They were rushed to the hospital, and Idan was taken to the pediatric ICU to be given oxygen.
Idan was hospitalized for several days before they received the diagnosis, a very rare form of pneumonia caused by the most common of fungi that lives in nearly all of us: PCP. It wreaked havoc on his baby lungs, and he had to be placed on a ventilator for 13 days to help him breathe. After three excruciatingly long weeks, Idan's lungs finally recovered and he was discharged from the hospital.
Eventually, Idan was diagnosed with Hyper IgM, an extremely rare and life-threatening genetic primary immune deficiency disorder where the immune system fails to fight against even the most harmless of germs.
Today, the Zablockis are treating Idan with regular weekly infusions of immunoglobulin replacement therapy and antibiotics to prevent reoccurrences of the PCP. To date, most individuals with Hyper IgM have not survived past their third decade of life, and are often plagued with recurrent infections and high incidence of cancer.
For more information about Idan’s journey, please visit his webpage