Special Report: Little lifesaver
Andy Trevino gets both hugs and hits from his little sister Sofia. But this brother and sister have fought a much tougher battle together, a battle to save Andy's life.
Andres Trevino/Andy's Dad
"Andy's 6 years old and he's been in the hospital for more than 650 days."
Andy was born with Primary Immune Deficiency; essentially his immune system doesn't work.
"It's pretty scary because he kept having life threatening infections."
The only option for a cure, a bone marrow transplant. But, his parents say they couldn't find a donor who was a perfect match.That's where sister Sofia comes into the picture.
"At first it sounded like science fiction, but we decided to have another baby."
Stem cells from the new baby's umbilical cord and bone marrow would be used to make a new immune system for Andy. But to be a perfect match, fertility doctors had to make a girl and test the embryo for genetic diseases.
That's where the controversy comes in.
Dr. Ian Hardy/Fertility Center of New England
"When we are literally preserving the life of this beautiful little boy, at the same time the mother giving life to this beautiful little girl, the ethics for us was simple."
But some groups feel making one life to save another is playing god.
Marie Sturgis/Mass Citizens for Life
" This goes against nature because it's man orchestrating the flow of human life."
One-year later, Andy shares more than playtime with his sister, he now has the same immune system as Sofia.
To this family, their beloved daughter is their little lifesaver.
"She's our miracle. She's our savior."
Instead of spending so much time here at Children's Hospital, doctors say Andy can now fight off infections on his own, which means he's finally getting a chance to be a kid instead of a patient.
Andy's family has been keeping a diary, of sorts, a web site with thoughts, fears and medical facts they learned along the way to a cure.
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