by Sarah Forgany | KENS 5 San Antonio
SAN ANTONIO -- Two weeks ago, 13-year-old Ricky Evans was in perfect health. Today he's fighting for his life.
"After thanksgiving, his skin turned yellow, his eyes were yellow, I took him to the hospital," Richard Evans said.
Soon after, Evans discovered his son had acute liver failure. Within days, Ricky was placed in the intensive care unit.
"I promised him mama would stay strong but I do shed tears when I'm alone," Said Rosemary Nunez,"I'm scared for the fact, that he doesn't make this through."
Ricky's health is deteriorating by the minute according to Doctor Jose Almeda. He says the teenager is barely alert.
"It's scary. You can have a child perfectly normal and come in with a full minute liver failure on death bed," Said Dr. Jose Almeda, Ricky's doctor. "The only thing to change that is a transplant."
A transplant however is proving to be a challenge for Ricky. Although San Antonio has the only Live Donor Liver Transplant program in Texas, Dr. Almeda says finding an actual donor is difficult.
For Ricky, it's even more rare. Doctors say his blood type is "O", that makes him a universal donor but he can only accept an organ from another person with "O" blood type.
So far, Almeda says they've exhausted all family, friends and potential donors. Ricky's life is in grave danger, Almeda said.
"I'm not asking for much. I"m not asking for much, I just want my boy home for Christmas," Said Evans, "It would mean the world to me if someone gives him a second chance and donates a liver."
Dr. Almeda says there is little risk to donating a liver.
"The good thing about donating part of your liver, especially to a kid, it's a small portion and that liver regenerates. So in 6 weeks, your liver will be back to 80% of it's size," Said Almeda.
Almeda says he's ready to perform the operation but there hasn't been a match for Ricky.
Not even his own parents have qualified.
"All we're asking is for someone to give the little boy a second chance," Evans Said.
A chance, Ricky's parents are well aware, now lies in the hands of a stranger.
"That would mean the world to me. That would mean that I'd get my son back," Ricky's father said, "I'd get to enjoy another Thanksgiving with him."
"Please I'm desperate, I need someone to be a donor. I don't want my baby to leave, I want him to be with us here for Christmas," Said Nunez.
Time is running out for Ricky. Dr. Almeda says every second counts.
In order to help, doctors say you must be between the age of 20 to 50 years old, in perfect health
and with a blood type "O".
You can call the Living Donor Department at University Hospital at 210-567-5777 or 210-567-0995.
You can also call family member Fernando Hernandez 210-849-0771.