Local girl suffering from rare disease needs a new kidney

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LUBBOCK, Texas — Ellie Mullins is a 5-year-old girl suffering from a rare kidney disease that causes damaging scar tissue in her kidneys. She needs an O positive kidney. If you’d like to donate to help her family, visit her campaign page here.

“We adopted Ellie when she was young, and she’s an amazing girl. And when she was 2 years old, she started swelling up and retaining water,” said Abigail Mullins, Ellie’s mother. “And she was diagnosed with a rare kidney disease called FSGS.”

However, despite everything little Ellie has gone through, she’s still managed to put on a brave face throughout all of it. Ellie said she’s very thankful for how hard her parents work to help her.

“[My parents] work really hard to get everything ready,” said Ellie. The 5-year-old has a rare kidney disease called Focal Segmental Glomerular Sclerosis, or FSGS. The condition causes permanent scarring in her kidney filters.

Although she’s undergone five surgeries, over a dozen hospitalizations and several harsh treatments, nothing has worked.

In March 2020, Ellie was placed on life-saving dialysis due to double kidney failure. Her family also has to travel to Fort Worth at least once a month for treatments, and insurance only covers so much of all the medical bills.

“The financial burden that this causes is just great, and causes a lot of stress, in addition to our everyday medical struggles we have, and we’re also in need of a living donor,” said Abigail Mullins.

Now, Ellie’s family is raising funds with the Children’s Organ Transplant Association, or COTA. Between now and December 1, an anonymous donor will match donations up to $2,000 – with all of the proceeds going directly to Ellie, and they’ll be available throughout her lifetime.

“Ellie’s help her goal is $55,000 is what we are trying to raise right now for her campaign. And COTA is a nonprofit organization. So, all gifts are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law,” said COTA volunteer and Ellie’s campaign organizer Rebekah Gillespie. “They go through COTA, and then the funds that are raised to help families like Ellie, so everything raised in honor of Ellie’s hope goes 100% to the family through COTA.”

Any donation would mean the world to Ellie’s family.

“She’s a sweet, special, charming kid. And I think she feels all the support that she gets too,” said Abigail Mullins. “And that’s important for her healing and treatment. And we just really appreciate everyone’s support.”

If you’re interested in seeing if you’re a donor match, email the reporter for more information: akoczera@nexstar.tv.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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