Gentrie is a happy, fun girl that will reach out to everyone and include them as a friend. She loves to dance, cheer, read, and finds art to be her passion. Because of her condition, she dreams of being a professional chef and collects recipes as she watches hours of food network. She has a strong desire to do well in school so that she can have an opportunity to be a physicians assistant and give back some of the service that she has received. Gentrie is the youngest of five siblings with the first three being big strong brothers that love to play sports. (Her brother Braden is currently a lineman at BYU.) She loves her new sister-in-laws and is best friends with her only sister Kenzie.
Usually you could find Gentrie surrounded by friends and always on the go. Her life changed dramatically in December when her stomach began to reject anything that she put in it. She has a rare condition called pediatric gastroparesis which means that her stomach is paralyzed. She has been unable to eat or drink anything since the first of this year. There is not a cure for gastroparesis and because they do not understand what caused her stomach to abruptly quit working, they are uncertain as to if or when her stomach will work again.
Gentrie is dependent on TPN for her nutrition and because of her weak condition along with constant nausea and vomiting, she is unable to go to school much less anywhere else. She has spent much of the past six months in and out of the hospital with malnutrition and dehydration as well as blood infections and five failed GJ tubes.
Recently we were referred to a group of doctors at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio that specialize in motility disorders. We spent a week out there to have more extensive tests and expert advise as the doctors locally have less experience with the disorder. Gentrie had botox surgically placed in specific stomach muscles should have helped with her problems but we did not see any change. Because of this, Gentrie is now waiting to be part of an experimental study where she will have a GI pacemaker placed in her stomach. Because of the experimental nature of the procedure, insurance will usually deny benefits. This is Gentrie’s hope for a better quality of life. Through facebook, she has been in touch with other teenage girls with similar diagnosis that have had very promising results with the pacemaker.
Fight 4 Gen is set up to help raise money for expenses related to her medical care. Our initial stay in Ohio for this procedure will be three to four weeks and will require ongoing visits to monitor and maintain the Gastric pacemaker.