I became aware of Kyle Hicks several months ago. I have still not had the pleasure to meet him. This Wichita teen has a rare inherited disease of the fibrils that hold the layers of skin together called Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB). Kyle’s condition results in blisters over much of his body. Each day, Kyle must clean, cover with fresh Vaseline, gauze and bandage the blistered areas of his body, usually from his shoulders to his toes. It takes over two hours to soak off old bandages and put on new ones to prevent infections.
For much of his life, there has been no treatment EB. However recently, Dr. John Wagner and his team at the University of Minnesota Fairview Clinic have pioneered treatment to develop the anchoring fibrils missing in Kyle’s skin. The treatment requires a bone marrow transplant. Kyle was accepted into Dr. Wagner’s program in April 2008 and a perfect bone marrow donor match was found early in the summer of 2008. To get this surgery, Kyle needs to raise $500,000 dollars, of which over $230,000 have already been raised.
To learn more about Kyle who writes poetry and keeps a weekly blog on his website, his condition, and to donate to his transplant fund, please visit his website at http://www.cotaforkyleh.com/