Surgery postponed for Monterey football player who collapsed after game
Freshman Zaidyn Ward collapsed after the football game Aug. 31
LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - It’s been just under a month since freshman Zaidyn Ward collapsed after a football game.
Ward originally went to the Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth. There, he was told he would need open heart surgery. He was sent back home for a few weeks to recover from COVID-19 before undergoing the procedure.
“What they wanted him to do was come here and give, I guess, his lungs, enough time to heal,” Ward’s mother, Cassandra Combs, said.
Since then, doctors learned some good news. The condition is not genetic, but the good came with some bad.
“They did a lot of testing and stuff, and what I was telling you about with his right artery, that one is closed,” Combs said. “The left one is slowly closing up.”
Combs says Ward’s heart is not pumping like a 14-year-old heart should, so the pediatric cardiologist wants another specialist to join the surgery.
“He has like a rare condition, it’s real rare, and kind of, they never really heard of it,” Combs said. “So, with that being said, they need an adult cardiologist.”
Combs says nurses have told her they are also looking for someone with a lot of experience, because any slip up could kill him.
“My anxiety is sky high, been kind of nervous and still am. Trying to be calm and play the waiting game, and wanting answers,” Combs said.
Combs admits to being nervous, but she says she’s relying on her faith to be strong for him.
“God gave him a second chance,” Combs said. “So, that’s what I try to tell him, you were meant to be here, He wasn’t done with you, so got to keep going. We’re not through with you yet.”
While Ward has had a chance to be home, he’s went back to school for a couple hours a day, and even went to homecoming.
Combs says Ward has felt a lot of Plainsmen love, but support has also come from across the field.
“Got a big ol’, kind of like a get-well package from Wylie High School, the team that he played against,” Combs said. “So, he was happy to see the get-well cards and stuff.”
After the procedure, Combs says they will have to take routine trips to Fort Worth for check-ups. The long battle is not yet over, but Combs says they will keep patiently waiting.
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