Mom needs help encouraging daughter healing from heart transplant

Posted at 5:41 PM, Feb 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-06 17:44:32-05

CINCINNATI -- When Crystal Perez found out her 16-year-old daughter Briana needed a heart transplant, she asked if she could call her husband before she told her daughter.

She didn’t have to, because in a moment of serendipity, he was already at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center for a surprise visit.

“Everything came together, it was like perfect timing,” Crystal said.

Now, she's hoping Tri-Staters can send words of encouragement, either in the form of E-cards or get well soon cards, to her teenage daughter as she heals.

Crystal, a mother of seven, reached out to WCPO in hopes to spread the word about these needed encouragements.

“I think this will be really important to her. She likes knowing that everybody cares. Seeing the cards would just reassure her people are out there rooting for her,” Crystal said.

Briana has had heart problems since she was just a year old and had her first valve replacement at 3. Before the transplant doctors said she had cardiomyopathy, or an enlarged heart.

She was with her family at the Garth Brooks and Trish Yearwood concert a few weeks ago when she started getting atypical chest pains, Crystal said, so they called a few doctors and took Briana to the hospital.

Briana, an avid dancer, photographer and singer, had been on the transplant list since August, but after the episode at the concert, was able to receive a new heart quickly.

“Everything’s going well so far. I just kind of want to reach out to people so she can hopefully receive get well cards ... just to show her everybody’s thinking of her and encourage her to push on,” Crystal said.

If you’d like to send Briana a message, you can go to this link, using her first and last name.

Or send snail mail here:

Attention: Briana Perez
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital
3333 Burnet Ave.  MLC 5003
Cincinnati, Ohio 45229

You can follow her journey on this Facebook page.