My name is Christine Grixti and I am a heart transplantee

I was diagnosed with a dilated cardiopathy at the age of 18.  The symptoms varied; mainly I was having frequent fainting spells, and had to undergo several tests to determine the root cause of these symptoms. After a few years it was understood that the heart muscle was expanding at a slow pace. However, everything changed eleven years ago when I experienced the trauma of losing both my parents within a short interval of each other.

In May of 2007, my father passed away and four short years later I lost my mum.  I come from a very close-knit family so understandably their loss had a substantial effect on my life as I knew it and consequently my health suffered too.  My heart began to deteriorate at a faster pace and in 2008 I had to be implanted with an Implantable Cardioverter Defibillator (ICD).


My serenity did not last long, and shortly after my mother’s death, in 2011, I contracted a severe infection in the wire leads connected to my heart.  I spent most of my days going in and out of hospital, and was prescribed copious amounts of antibiotics to help fight off the infection, but all was in vain.  After two years it was suggested that I should go abroad to undergo a medical intervention to improve my situation. My husband and I travelled to Pisa in October of 2013, where I had two operations in one month.  

Back in Malta and I was put on the waiting list for a heart transplant.  A new journey had begun; a journey which gave me more courage and determination to get stronger.  Considering the enlargement of my heart, amid the daily limitations, the strong medication, the frequent hospital visits and the frequent Ventricular Tachycardia episodes, I was trying to live as ‘normal’ life as possible. On the 9th of June 2016 at 2.30pm I received a phone call from hospital.  There was the possibility of a matching heart. I felt joy but at the same time sadness, as that meant someone had lost his or her life. The transplant was performed the following morning by Mr Manche and his dedicated team. After seven weeks I was back home and found myself living with a new healthy heart.  

Thanks to the family of my donor and my guardian angel, I was given a second chance to live.  I encourage each and every one reading my story to be a proud donor. Through my donor’s generous and selfless act, my health has been restored.  Special thanks goes to my husband, my family and friends who were there for me throughout this tough long journey.

To the patients waiting for an organ, this is the message I wish to pass on: Have faith and hope and never give up.  We cannot change our destiny but we can change the way we live our life. Think positive, praise yourself when you are having a good day, cry if you feel like crying but more importantly stand up again on your feet.  If you have the strength, help others and also love yourself. Faith is the secret to your happiness and your cure.

Our small gesture today could save lives.    

Be a Hero – be an organ donor.  

It is so wonderful to be able to do the following:

  • Give sight to a person who has never seen a sunrise, a baby’s face or love in the eyes of another.
  • Pass on your precious heart to a person whose own heart has caused nothing but endless days of pain.
  • Give blood to the teenager who was pulled from the wreckage of his car, so that he or she might live to see their grandchildren play.
  • Donate kidneys to others who depend on machines to live from week to week.
  • Offer the liver and other important organs and tissues to those who depend on medication and machines to see their children and grandchildren grow.