PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Carly Repcheck has loved music as long as she can remember.
However, memories of a life marked by serious illness also linger. The 19-year-old Mt. Lebanon High School graduate has been hospitalized often, since she first came to Children’s Hospital at the age of 18 months.
But, she has a positive outlook.
“She’s very cheerful,” says her mother, Carma Repcheck. “She doesn’t know much different. She’s always been in and out of hospitals. It’s kind of what she knows.”
“It’s just kind of like, I’m used to it now. It’s part of my daily routine,” Carly said.
“The nurses, the doctors, everyone knows her,” Carma said. “And she does, she feels very at home here.”
One of those doctors, Mark Vander Lugt, a bone marrow transplant therapist, got involved when other treatments fell short.
That’s when her 16-year-old brother stepped up to donate his marrow.
“We always like to use siblings as a donor because we feel like we have less risk of some of the more serious complications when we use a sibling,” Dr. Vander Lugt says. “So, he ended up being a perfect match.”
More than 100 days after the transplant, Carly’s immune system continues to improve, thanks to the support of family and the staff at Children’s Hospital.