Matching organs. Saving lives.

Ambassador story: Maria Margarita Gamboa

Ambassador story: Maria Margarita Gamboa

Life is beautiful

In 2007, after surviving atypical viral pneumonia, chronic encephalitis and several days in a coma, Maria was diagnosed with Systemic Scleroderma, a rare autoimmune, degenerative and incurable disease that caused her Pulmonary Fibrosis and Pulmonary Hypertension, among others conditions. After has been connected for 4 years to oxygen concentrators to keep her alive, the only way to save her was a double lung transplant not available in her country Venezuela.

She tried it in several centers around the world and, after having been rejected in Colombia, Spain, Brazil and Argentina, in several transplant centers in the United States due to his base disease, in October of 2014, she was officially admitted for a double lung transplant at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. To complete the expenses to pay for her transplant, since he did not have international medical insurance, she created a campaign through which he made and sold with her mother and family more than 100 thousand handmade bracelets with a HOPE message.

After receiving the largest amount of supplemental oxygen, a person can receive to stay alive and have been on the verge of death, on December 23, 2014 she received a double lung transplant. It has been 4 very complex years but she has lived to the fullest. In 2018, as a consequence of her treatment and condition, she was diagnosed with Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 5, which is why she now requires a kidney transplant from a living donor.

Those who knows Maria know that she is a very hard-working person and above all with a great human quality, one of those people full of love, HOPE and optimism that she transmits to those who know her and is able to achieve an immediate connection with her and her story. That is why none of this has prevented her continuing to help and educate humanity, even with all these sufferings. She says organ donation is the most wonderful miracle of modern medicine.

She has decided to dedicate her life as an Ambassador of United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), Life Alliance Organ Recovery Agency-University of Miami for the Hispanic community of South Florida and Lifebanc in the Northeast of the State of Ohio in U.S.

As part of these programs she shares her experience and inspires people, especially the Hispanic community, to donate life and raise awareness about organ, eye and tissue donation and encourages the public to register as a donor. She also shares her story, both in Spanish and English, at health fairs, religious organizations, high schools, driver licenses offices, school presentations, community support programs and events that reach diverse communities in the United States. She is currently involved in several educational programs to continue raising awareness about organ donation.

Without a doubt, María Margarita is an example to follow ahead in the circumstances that life presents to us. We invite you to know more about her history and to register as an organ, eye and tissue donation.

Instagram @margaragamboa

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