Chloe Alligood receives an early Christmas gift

Published 10:57 am Thursday, December 9, 2010

Staff Writer

Chloe Alligood, a 16-month-old Beaufort County girl, received an early Christmas present — a liver transplant.
Velma Woolard, Chloe’s great-aunt, said Chloe’s parents, Melissa Elks and Colon Alligood, were awakened at 2 a.m. Sunday by a phone call informing them that a liver for Chloe had been located. They and Chloe immediately left for Duke University Medical Center.
“But,” Woolard said, “in order to have been able to receive a new liver, Chloe’s blood type had to be a match first.”
Woolard said numerous tests determined Chloe and the donor liver were compatible. Chloe was in pre-op by 9 a.m. and in the operating room 30 minutes later.
“The surgery was a success, and she was in ICU at 7:30 p.m.,” Woolard said. “So far, no rejection. Thank God. The family is overwhelmed and extremely thankful by the generosity of prayers, donations and love for Chloe, and will forever be grateful. Also, their hearts and prayers go out for the (donor) child and her family for their generous gift to Chloe.”
Chloe was diagnosed with progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis, which is a class of chronic cholestasis disorders that begin in infancy and usually progress to cirrhosis within the first decade of life.
Just last week, according to Woolard, Chloe, who had been on a local transplant list, was added to a regional transplant list by her doctors, a list that covers five states. It was after being put on the regional list that a donor liver was located.
“All the tubes came out of her stomach, and she is doing great,” Woolard said.
Woolard said although Chloe is recovering quickly, doctors plan to move her out of ICU and into a regular hospital room as soon as a bed is available.
“She does have to stay at Duke University (Medical Center) for 30 days,” Woolard said. “But she is able to leave the hospital in two and a half to three weeks, and will have to stay in the area for the remainder of the 30 days.”
Woolard said doctors and nurses have nicknamed Chloe “Fiesty” because she is such a little fighter.
“The family is so appreciative of the community and the outpouring of support for Chloe,” Woolard said.
Last week, teachers, students and faculty at Washington Montessori Public Charter School raised more than $1,000 to help pay for expenses associated with her transplant.
Chloe’s family and friends have placed donation containers in several businesses around Washington to help raise money to pay for the transplant and related expenses.
Before Chloe received the transplant, her liver was slowly deteriorating and would have eventually shut down, doctors told the family.
According to, all forms of PFIC are lethal in childhood unless treated. They can be rapidly progressive and result in cirrhosis during infancy, or they may progress relatively slowly, well into adolescence and cause minimal scarring.
Anyone wishing to make a donation to help pay for Chloe’s transplant and related expenses should make his or her check payable to the Chloe Alligood Liver Transplant Fund and sent it to State Employees Credit Union, P.O. Box 307, Washington NC 27889. Donations should be sent to the attention of Debbie Woolard.
Cards may be mailed to Chloe. Mail them to Chloe Alligood, University Inn, Room 309, Duke University Hospital, 502 Elf St., Durham NC 27705.