Is there anyone out there who will save my life YouTube transplant plea by Holly, 19
Holly has cystic fibrosis and has only 20 per cent lung function
It would be amazing if more people signed up even if it's too late for me, says brave teenMarks growing trend of patients making heartfelt appeals for organs online
10:42 GMT, 19 September 2012
Hoping: Holly Pereira, who desperately needs a lung donor, has made a YouTube plea for more people to sign the national organ donor register
When most young people place a video on YouTube, the aim is to share a cherished moment or favourite song.
Holly Pereira hopes it will save her life.
The 19-year-old cystic fibrosis sufferer fears she will not see her 21st birthday unless she receives a double lung transplant.
She has made a haunting, three-minute video about her plight which she hopes will persuade viewers to sign up to the national organ donor register.
‘There is nothing more I can do,’ said Holly, whose father John is a plastic surgeon, at the family’s country house in Buxted, East Sussex.
‘If I can get just a few people to sign up to the register which in future saves lives, even if it’s too late for me, that would be amazing.’
Holly was diagnosed at 18 months with the genetically inherited disease, which affects the digestive and respiratory systems.
Despite daily medication, she has only 20 per cent of her lung function left.
She has spent six months on the national transplant register and is desperately awaiting a call to say that a donor has been found.
The Pereira family’s position is doubly heartrending as Holly’s brother Jake, 18, also has cystic fibrosis and will need a transplant at some point.
In the black-and-white clip on video-sharing website YouTube, she says cystic fibrosis ‘makes the smallest, everyday tasks, like showering, walking or taking the stairs very difficult as I get out of breath very easily’.
'Being put on the list means that my chances of survival without a transplant may mean I only have a few years left to live.
to the lack of organs available I may find it hard to find a suitable
donor. I am very small and my blood type that I am means I may have a
‘This could be 18 months or over and during this time my illness may get progressively worse, which means I may rely on oxygen to breathe and may not be able to get around properly.
Scroll down for video…
Haunting: Holly describes what life is like with cystic fibrosis and says she almost can't imagine what it must be like to be able to breathe properly
Illness: Cystic fibrosis is a genetic condition that causes the build up of thick sticky mucus in the lungs and digestive system (see xray of a CF patient, left). Both Holly (right) and her brother have CF
Holly says simple tasks such as climbing stairs are difficult for her
'To be able to receive a new pair of
lungs would mean that my life would be significantly better, I would be
able to do things I can’t do at the moment.'
ends the video by urging people to sign up to the organ donor register
and saying how, once she does not need them, she will give 'any of my
healthy organs away'.
reminds viewers that the most crucial step is to let close family know
what organs they would wish to donate as they have the final say after
Her grandfather David Nicholson, 67,
said he was in tears when he watched the video, which she posted without
telling her family.
wife Carol added: ‘We are very proud of what she has done and we want
people to come forward and register so it gives youngsters like her a
chance in life.’
■ To sign the confidential NHS organ donor register, click here.
VIDEO: A plea from the heart… Watch Holly's video here…