My name is Anna Lindner and I am 13 years old.
I enjoy riding because I feel free being outdoors and can forget about my illness for awhile.
I was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension when I was 6. Before I was diagnosed, I was having difficulty breathing just walking a short distance such as from my car at the Target parking lot to the entrance made me short of breath.
It wasn’t until I passed out two different times one after a very hot, humid day and once after walking a flight of stairs, that my parents took me to the doctor.
At first, the doctors dismissed my episodes stating many things can cause children to pass out.
However, my EKG showed an enlarged right side of the heart.
It was then, the doctors at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh diagnosed me with PH.
Children’s Hospital did not have any cases similar to mine and were not sure of treatment.
They referred my case to Dr. Erica Berman Rosenzweig at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York. She still works in conjunction with the doctors in Pittsburgh regarding my care.
I take a large dose of Procardia everyday. Without the medicine, I have a very hard time breathing.
I am not able to participate in any competitive sports. I am able to play sports for leisure which allows me to take needed rest breaks. Before I was diagnosed, I played soccer and tennis.
I wanted to find a hobby that I could still do with my PH. About four years ago, I started taking horseback riding lessons and am now learning how to jump. I enjoy riding because I feel free being outdoors and can forget about my illness for awhile.
My mother told me about Team PHenomenal Hope and how they were going to Ride Across America to raise awareness of PH. I wrote them a letter and asked them to contact me. It has been history ever since! My family and I met them at the finish line in Annapolis, Md. We had an amazing time!
I also walk with my team “Anna’s Army” at the annual PH 5k at the Northshore of Pittsburgh.
This past November, my family and I went to the incredible island of Maui, HI for my Make-A-Wish. We went horseback riding on the cliffs overlooking the beach!
Just knowing that Team PHenomenal Hope is seeking a cure and supporting me everyday makes me feel like I am not alone in my fight against PH.