At only three days old, Tyler had his first open heart surgery after he was diagnosed with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, a complex congenital heart defect. By the time he was 14 months old, he had a second open heart surgery. After his 3rd open heart surgery, his family received devastating news that Tyler was experiencing rapid heart failure. He was listed for a transplant and doctors at CHOP were trying to find a breakthrough treatment. They had an idea to implant a ventricular assist device (VAD), a mechanical pump to circulate blood throughout the body, despite the fact that this device was designed for adults. Ultimately, CHOP doctors successfully implanted the device in Tyler and he was the smallest child to receive this device. Tyler continues to respond well to the VAD which allows him to go to school, play sports and thrive while he waits to receive a heart transplant.