akronchildrens.org

Change Bandit Spotlight: Andrew and Gabriel Wherley Twins thriving after receiving pacemaker for rare heart condition

drew-and-gabe,-webTo show their gratitude toward Akron Children’s Hospital, Andrew and Gabe are Change Bandits for the “Have a Heart, Do Your Part” radiothon, which airs Feb. 7-9 on 98.1 WKDD.

In 2008, twins Drew and Gabe were enjoying life as any other rambunctious 6-year-olds. But their parents began to notice a growing health concern.

Every few months, Gabe would pass out. After several episodes, they were referred to Akron Children’s Hospital’s Heart Center.

Gabe received a Holter monitor, which showed that during one of his fainting episodes, Gabe’s heart had stopped for 11 seconds. He was diagnosed with a rare heart condition called sinus node dysfunction.

Gabe received a pacemaker from Dr. John Clark and his team of specialists. While he was recovering, his brother, Drew, came in for a visit and passed out at the foot of the bed.

After also being fitted with a Holter monitor, his results showed that his heart stopped for 20 seconds. He received a pacemaker the next day.

Today, they are both healthy and lead active lifestyles.

“We thank God for the brilliant and caring staff at Akron Children’s Hospital,” said their mother, Carla Wherley. “They are not just employees of the heart department, they are our friends.”