Medical Breakthrough: Teen receives third organ transplant

By: Naomi De Lucia

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Getting matched once for a transplant is considered lucky. 

Joe Sanchez Munoz, 19, was born with multicystic dysplastic kidney disease, and doctors found his kidneys were severely underdeveloped. He was later diagnosed with liver cancer. 

He’s had three organ transplants throughout his life.

At just 10 months old, “Joe Joe” received his first transplant for a liver. Chemotherapy for the liver cancer also affected his kidneys, leading to a kidney transplant.

In 2023, Joe Joe’s heart was in jeopardy as a result of being immunocompromised.      

Dr. Michael Ma, a heart surgeon at Stanford Medicine Children’s Health, and his team of cardiologists worked alongside liver and kidney specialists to map out a plan to save Joe Joe's life.

Joe Joe says he is so appreciative of the care he received through the years he spent hospitalized at Stanford, and now he wants to pay it forward. 

The teen is considering entering the nursing field, just like his mom and the people who saved him. 

Watch the video above for the full story. 


7 Days