Health Care

As we celebrate National Donate Life Month, a young patient thrives six years after her life-saving liver transplant

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It only took a few weeks for Teagan’s parents to know something was not right with their beautiful baby girl’s health. She had jaundice, a distended stomach and was thin and fragile. “She was tiny (and) she was so sick,” said Elizabeth Puglisi, Teagan’s mother.

The couple turned to AdventHealth for help and Teagan soon became the second patient of the AdventHealth Transplant Institute’s pediatric liver transplant program.

Teagan and her mom

Teagan is now six and thriving. “To see her (now) as a normal child is just an incredible reward,” said Dr. Regino P. Gonalez-Peralta, pediatric liver transplant medical director at AdventHealth for Children.

AdventHealth Transplant Institute’s pediatric liver transplant program is the first and only one of its type in Central Florida and the busiest in the state. It allows local families to benefit from world-class care without having to travel a long distance. The program has performed 52 transplants since its inception in 2018. “It saved her life. She would not be here without (AdventHealth) and we are so thankful for that,” said Puglisi.

Click the photo at the top of this page to learn more about Teagan’s journey and the AdventHealth Transplant Institute’s pediatric liver transplant program.

Nearly 104,000 people are waiting for a lifesaving transplant in the U.S., according to the United Network for Organ Sharing. Of those, almost 600 are being cared for by teams at the AdventHealth Transplant Institute, Orlando’s only solid-organ transplant program.

Florida residents can sign up to be an organ donor at

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