MEDFIELD, Mass. — A Medfield mom has donated a part of her liver to save a baby she's never even met. She learned about the baby in need through her mothers' Facebook group.
"I promise you don't need to be a superhero to do this," she said.
Andrea Alberto claims she's just a normal mom. But she's much more than that after saving a baby's life.
"It's really been amazing for me to get to watch him do so well," she said.
Alberto learned baby Cal needed a new liver after his mom posted about his condition in a mother's Facebook group. Even though she didn't know this family from Connecticut, Alberto jumped to help.
About seven weeks ago she donated 30% of her liver to baby Cal, and they both spent two weeks in the hospital recovering.
"At this point, 7 weeks out, [it's] almost entirely regrown to its original size and my liver will continue to grow in Cal to be the size he needs it to be," she said.
Alberto was only the 97th person in the U.S. to donate a liver to a stranger. She says her friends, who were also donors, inspired her to do it. Plus, as a single mom of two boys with a full-time job, she says it truly takes a village for all mothers to help each other out.
"I have a friend right now who comes every week and takes my trash and I have friends who bring me dinner and I have so many people in my life who have supported me in so many different ways," she said. "And I feel like this just falls under the umbrella of the way people help each other."
For Alberto, donating her liver wasn't a big deal. But she knows just how big of a deal it was for baby Cal and his family.
"He's doing great," she said. "He had his birthday this week, he just turned one, and he ate birthday cake!"
She says many people don't realize livers regenerate, and the risks for her were very low. Now she hopes to inspire other donors to save more lives.
"As long as you're willing to sacrifice a few weeks of your life and get a really cool scar then you can change someone's whole life, which is really incredible," she said.
Alberto says most people need to wait for a deceased donor to get the liver they need. But the surgery can be so much more successful if there's a living donor willing to help.
Cox Media Group