Sioux Falls COVID-19 patient gets new lungs

HealthBeat

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A Sioux Falls man has survived a double lung transplant. We first brought you Nathan Foote’s story in January. After contracting COVID-19, Foote needed new lungs to live.

Hip Hop Artist and father of five, Nathan Foote, told us he didn’t take COVID-19 very seriously until it landed him in the hospital and destroyed his lungs. Nathan was preparing to die when he went on Facebook live:

“So now, I sit and wait. I wait for death to come. It’s like one of the hardest (expletive) in the world, man,” Nathan Foote said on Facebook on January 4th on Facebook.

However, following that post, Nathan learned he would be transferred from Sanford Health to the University of Minnesota Medical Center, where he underwent extensive testing to make sure he could withstand the surgery. Once he made the transplant list it was a waiting game, along with two false alarms that a new pair of lungs were on the way.

“It’s been definitely a roller coaster of emotions; ups and downs,” Angie Foote said.

However, on Saturday, a pair of new donor lungs came through.

“We didn’t get too excited until the exact moment when they said, hey we’re wheeling you down to the OR, because they skipped right over any pre-op procedures. They said, we’re ready to go, we’re taking you in the OR now–that was when we were like, this is really happening,” Angie Foote saiid.

The surgery took nearly 8 hours. And while Nathan isn’t up to going on camera today, he is showing signs of improvement.

Nathan Foote at University of Minnesota Medical Center following his double lung transplant surgery

Angie Foote: Making sure he gets stronger; being hospitalized and losing a lot of muscle mass–things like that. Your body has to sustain the new lungs as well–keeping it healthy and strong.
Kennecke: How are his spirits? How is Nathan feeling
Angie Foote: Feeling good. He’s overjoyed. There’s been happy tears and smiles–very grateful

Nathan has a long recovery ahead of him and will need to stay at U of M for another three months before he can return home to Sioux Falls.

The Footes say they are so grateful to the donor and the donor’s family. The hospital will allow them to write a letter to the donor family after a year has passed to see if they would like to have contact. Once Nathan is off the breathing machine we hope to talk to him and his doctors about the procedure. If you’d like to help the Foote family of seven with expenses, you can visit their GoFundMe page.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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