Savanah Barnes remains undefeated by her disability


Savanah Barnes

Savanah Barnes enjoying the holiday season

Ashlyn Gabbitas, reporter

A 15-year-old female freshman at Highland high school stands strong despite her many medical issues. Savanah Barnes is a singular ventricle heart patient. Barnes also has proportionate Dwarfism.

According to singular ventricle heart disease, means the lower chamber of the  heart may be smaller, undeveloped, or just not there. This results in the heart having one pumping chamber . The result of that is the amount of blood getting to the body is decreased. This can cause Cyanosis or blueness. Meaning that most patients having to use an air tank

“When I was little I had a surgery to try and get me off oxygen during the day,” Barnes said. The surgery worked but in 8th grade, her health went downhill and she ended up having to go back to oxygen.

“I like not having it, I feel free without it,” Barnes said

Barnes  has three air tanks her daily one, another she uses to refill her others, and on for traveling. She get’s her large air tank refilled every other Friday.

But even with medical issues, it doesn’t defer from her social life or education according to Barnes.

Woodin explains that Barnes is a very kind, helpful person who she loves to have fun and she doesn’t have any issue with making friends.

” I definitely love being friends with her she’s so happy and bubbly, she just makes my day,” said Woodin

Savanah also struggles with fellow students tripping over her air tank and delaying her getting on to her next class

Barnes is only able to come to highland do to the fact that its the only high school in the district that accommodates her handicapable needs.

“It’s like people blame me if they trip over it or if I accidentally run over someone’s foot, I can’t control it that much it is like carrying around a suitcase,” Barnes said

Due to Barnes’s medical issues, she has to take 13-14 pills a day plus extra vitamins.

Barnes is on an organ transplant list for both a heart and a liver hoping if she gets these it will help get her off the air tank again.

Barnes stated the reason she has some of these medical issues is the fact that her mother didn’t have enough iron and other vitamins in her body while pregnant.

Barnes also has to see her nurse in the mornings at school so she can have her heart rate, blood pressure, and oxygen level’s checked.

But despite all these struggles Savanah still gets good grades and has lots of friends.