LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - A Lubbock mother is speaking about her 24-year-old son, Tanner Rodrigues, who is fighting for his life at UMC due to a mysterious bacterial infection in his heart.
Tanner’s mom, Lisa Hall, says a couple of weeks ago, Tanner started having cold-like symptoms, but doctors found a gray dot on his eye and were concerned about it. Doctors discovered that Tanner’s heart valves were shredding and pieces were moving up to his eye, damaging the rest of his body too.
“Since it’s a small piece in the back of the eye, they’re blocking his vessels and veins and it’s killing off parts of his organs,” said Hall. “I’m devastated. This is my baby.”
Hall says a bacterial infection is causing all of this damage, but doctors are unsure how it developed. Hall says they think it may be from the medal rods in his back from a surgery a couple of years ago.
“I wanna know why this is happening to him,” said Hall.
Hall says Tanner is awake and recognizes hospital visitors, but woke up developing more complications on Tuesday.
“He had complications with his liver this morning and his intestines, so pretty much that’s why his organs are starting to fail; the valves aren’t getting enough blood flow to everything.”
Hall, her husband and Tanner are all owners of Woody’s Brick Oven Pizza on 34th street and now they cannot work, but manager and friend of Tanner, Jen Alanis, is helping to hold down the fort and thinking about the family as she works.
“With Tanner, you cannot help but love him you know? All of us back here as we’ve been hearing the news, it’s just been getting a lot harder for us,” said Alanis. “We’re just trying to keep it together for Lisa and Jacob so that they can be with Tanner and not have to worry about the business.”
On Wednesday, Tanner is being flown to a Baylor University Heart Hospital in Plano, where Hall says he will eventually have heart surgery after Tanner combats the infection in his blood. Hall says Tanner will also need kidney, liver, and eye surgery among others.
A GoFundMe and a Facebook fundraiser have been set up to raise funds for the family as they make long trips and pay other personal bills under the circumstances.
Link to GoFundMe: https://www.gofundme.com/f/tanners-personal-fundraiser
Link to Facebook Fundraiser: https://www.facebook.com/donate/1258740814327227/10212784304120993/