Kevin J. Lederer Life Foundation - 2018 Family Story

Kristen and Matthew

Family Stories

Kristen and Matthew

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My fiancé, Matt, was admitted to the hospital for chronic lung allograft rejection when I met him for the first time four-and-a-half years ago. I was his nurse and, unbeknownst to me at the time, I ended up transferring the love of my life to the ICU where he waited for his second, life-saving bilateral lung transplant for cystic fibrosis. Four years, a proposal, and a third lung transplant later we are now planning for our wedding and family.

Two years ago, we confirmed that I was not a cystic fibrosis carrier, and decided I would stop taking my oral contraceptive. We knew that 98% of men with cystic fibrosis were infertile and thought that if we got pregnant, it would be our miracle baby.

We were referred by Matt’s lung transplant team to Dr. Robert Brannigan, a urologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, who diagnosed Matt with infertility secondary to cystic fibrosis and found out that the cost for his procedure alone was $7,800.

Dr. Brannigan then referred us to Northwestern to further discuss in vitro fertilization. At this appointment, we were informed about the Life Foundation, as neither Matt nor I had fertility benefits through our insurance. After we received an IVF Life Grant through Northwestern Fertility & Reproductive Medicine, we were able to become pregnant! Rylan was born in July 2019.  We are so very thankful for this grant and our little miracle!

When we found out that the next step was IVF, we thought our dreams were shattered

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Infertility affects 1 in 8 couples. The Life Foundation is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization and donations directly support providing patient education and grants to those struggling with infertility.