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My Precious Breath

My Precious Breath
Monday, March 19, 2012
Even as he waited on a lung transplant list, Jim Danley could sing – in fact, he made two CDs of himself performing classic popular songs as part of a fundraising effort to help cover transplant costs. He received a lung at Shands Hospital in Gainesville, FL, Feb. 13, 2003. (Then he made another CD.) Life has been a roller coaster since then. He’s needed both hips replaced due to...
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Confessions of an oxygen user

Confessions of an oxygen user
Monday, March 19, 2012
I was diagnosed with Alpha-1 and moderate emphysema in January, 1993 – for the next five years, I didn’t use oxygen – and after testing my oxygen saturation levels, my doctor prescribed oxygen for me to use during exercise. Shortly thereafter, he also prescribed it for sleep and for airline travel. For the next 10 years, I was pretty careful to use oxygen when I slept,...
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Alex Harrah’s Art Cars Help Him Cope with Alpha-1

Alex Harrah’s Art Cars Help Him Cope with Alpha-1
Friday, March 16, 2012
Alex Harrah is a lover of art and cars, but he is particularly a fan of fixing up old cars and adding flare, turning them into works of art. You can hear it in Harrah’s voice when he talks about building his most recent “Art Car,” an extremely detailed piece that took him seven years. Using the body of a 1951 Nash Statesman and the frame of a 1978 Lincoln Mark V, Harrah...
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It’s all about attitude

It’s all about attitude
Friday, March 16, 2012
Andrea says that keeping a positive attitude is the key to dealing with chronic illness Growing up, Andrea Maechtle was hardly ever sick. She never went to the doctor when she got a cold. She didn’t even stay home from school, or call in to work. She went about her day as if she weren’t sick at all. But then came a nasty cold. She was in her 40s. The cold lingered for weeks. She...
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The grim diagnosis…

The grim diagnosis…
Friday, March 16, 2012
Alpha-1 hasn’t kept these liver kids from living full, satisfying lives In the summer of 1986, Mike and Julia Berger had their first child, Jake. Jake had yellow skin and eyes, and his bilirubin count was very high. Family and friends in their home town of LaGrange, IL, encouraged Mike and Julia, saying things like, “Jaundice is very common in infants,” and...
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A One-Minute Alpha

A One-Minute Alpha
Friday, March 16, 2012
As chairman and chief executive officer of Clear Channel Entertainment — the almost $2 billion subsidiary of media giant Clear Channel Worldwide — Brian Becker doesn’t waste a minute: actually, he has his days scheduled almost down to the split-second. And when he talks, he makes every word count. His sentences seem to come in right to- the-point bursts. He speaks in the...
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Brian Jackson urges family testing and awareness

Brian Jackson urges family testing and awareness
Friday, March 16, 2012
Brian Jackson, 49, of Baltimore, MD, spent 20 years loving his work as a forklift operator – but he can’t do that job anymore, or play sports and was even recently told by a doctor he may someday need a lung transplant. Jackson is an Alpha-1 carrier – the MZ genotype. He is living proof that Alpha-1 carriers should never consider themselves safe from the lung diseases that...
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Canadian Alphas: the challenges are greater

Canadian Alphas: the challenges are greater
Friday, March 16, 2012
In 2001, a small group of Canadian Alphas, carriers and caregivers decided that something needed to be done about the lack of information and support for Alphas in Canada. The most obvious difficulty facing them: a tiny Alpha-1 population in a huge country. Geographically, Canada is larger than the United States, but has barely more than a tenth of the population. For that reason, nearly...
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