GR woman uses Facebook to search for liver donor

Katie Butler speaking to 24 Hour News 8 on April 7, 2017.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Social media is everywhere. Now one Grand Rapids woman is using it in hopes of saving her life.

Katie Butler was born with Hepatitis C and has used Facebook videos to document her journey in and out of the hospital.

She’s not considered sick enough to be placed high on the donor list though. Thursday doctors told her she scores at a 19 out of 40. Patients who place at 40 have 90 days to live, but those who fall in the middle often don’t get their transplant in time, she said.

Because of that Butler is praying someone who is alive and healthy can give her a portion of their liver — and save her life.

“I would do anything for the person able to help me. Friend or stranger, I would owe them my life because they’re saving mine,” she told 24 Hour News 8.

It’s possible for a healthy person to donate a small piece of their liver that can then be transplanted and regenerate in someone else’s body.

Butler posted an emotional video Thursday night on Facebook in hopes of finding her living donor. As of Friday afternoon, the video has been viewed nearly 4,500 times.

“I need somebody who has O Positive or O Negative, who is under 55 to donate a piece of their liver to save my life,” she said in the video.

In 2009, doctors told her she would only live five more years. In 2011, she was cured of Hepatitis C.

While she’s exceeded their expectations, she’s been bedridden since last September and now has focused her attention on finding a donor as soon as possible.

“You can die or live and I want to choose to live, so I won’t stop fighting on finding somebody until the very end,” Butler said.

Butler says those interested in going through the testing process can fill out a questionnaire for the Henry Ford Transplant Institute by clicking or tapping here. Donors are also expected to be in good health and have no damage to their liver from alcohol or drugs.

She added that even if you’re not a match for her, please consider becoming a donor for someone else.

“The world needs more compassion,” Butler added.



GoFundMe account to help Butler