Father’s Heartwrenching Decision: Adopted Twin Girls Need Livers and He Can Only Help One

International   |   Sarah Zagorski   |   Jan 26, 2015   |   6:28PM   |   Washington, DC

In 2012, Michael and Johanne Wagner adopted twin girls from a Vietnamese orphanage when they were 18-months-old. Both girls, Binh and Phuoc, suffer from Alagille syndrome, which is a genetic disorder that affects the liver, heart and other organs. Unfortunately, without a liver transplant, the girls will not survive.

Michael recently found out that his liver is a match to his three-year-old girls; however, he can only save one of them after a transplant. Now the couple is looking for another donor to save them both. According to CBC News, Johanne Wagner said surgeons at Toronto General Hospital are set to operate on Michael and one daughter in about two weeks. They have decided to let doctors decide which one of their girls is the best candidate for the transplant.

The Canadian couple, who have seven other children, has a Facebook page and a blog called One More Potato in the Pot with more information about the twins. If you are interested in being a donor, contact the University Health Network in Toronto. Donors must be between 18 and 55 years old with A or O blood type; and as of Sunday another donor has not been found.


Here’s more of their story:

While the hunt continues, a team of doctors at Toronto General Hospital will now decide which of the girls will receive the transplant.

Mrs Wagner told The Canadian Press: ‘We told them we didn’t want to be burdened with the decision making.

She added doctors are expected to perform the surgery in around two weeks, but the family are yet to find a second donor.

The Wagners had five of their own children before they decided to take Binh and Phouc in.

Mrs Wagner added: ‘When we saw them at the orphanage we were shocked, really.

‘They were 9 pounds at 18 months. So we left the orphanage that day and went to buy two little containers with dragonflies on them and that’s what we were going to lay their ashes in if they didn’t make it.’michaelwagner2

Despite the health problems, Mrs Wagner does not regret her decision.

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She said: ‘We look back and we have no regrets.

‘We would travel this path all over again. They have taught us openness, they have taught our children sharing and openness. It’s been nothing but a wonderful mess.’