Long Island Mom Pleads for Lung Transplant for Son With Rare Disease

A Long Island mother is fighting for her son’s survival — making a public plea on social media for new lungs for her son who is battling a disease so rare that it doesn’t even have a name.

After he was born, doctors said Nicholas Vigliotti wouldn’t survive his first day.

“They said, ‘You need to see your son, he only has minutes to live,’” mom Debbie Vigliotti said.

Now at 20 years old, Nicholas continues to battle a rare genetic disease called chromosome 14 deletion. It affects his lungs, his brain and his thyroid. At every stage of his life the doctors thought it would kill him.

“Every single doctor has said this child is a miracle child,” Debbie said.

Two years ago, Nicholas caught a virus that nearly killed him. He has been on a ventilator ever since.

“I’ve had many surgeries over the years and hospital visits; it’s just very hard,” Nicholas said.

Nicholas’ doctors have told him that in order to survive this latest battle, he needs to get off the ventilator and get a lung transplant. The problem is no one will give him the transplant. His mom, at her wit’s end, turned to Facebook for help.

“I'm praying to God that I can get this message out to millions of people,” Debbie says in the video. “All I need is one person; one doctor; one scientist; one research donor — someone to be willing to take a chance on Nico.”

Doctors have said they don’t know how a lung transplant would turn out for Nicholas, but Debbie says he’s a fighter who has already had 17 surgeries: “You don’t know Nico,” she said.

“There will be one doctor. I’m so hopeful there’s going be one doctor that’s going to reach out and say, ‘I wanna meet this kid.’”

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