MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — A Myrtle Beach toddler is in need of a critical surgery after an alarming diagnosis.
Connor Levy acts like any other 18 month old.
“As far as he knows, he’s just having a normal day to day playing and learning to do things and walking and talking,” said James Levy, Connor’s father.
Unlike most children, Connor was diagnosed with arteriovenous malformation (AVM) in March.
Basically, it’s a cluster of veins and arteries in between the two lobes of his brain that don’t belong there. They have a good potential to rupture and cause all sorts of bad stuff, brain bleed, stroke, or aneurysm,” James Levy said.
The scary part — AVM is hard to detect. Most people don’t know they have it until a rupture takes place, but Connor was lucky his doctor caught it early while getting an MRI for something else.
Connor had an embolization in April, and will have open brain surgery at MUSC in November.
“It’s the worst stress I’ve ever known. There’s always the possibility that it can rupture between now and the surgery. I’m always keeping a close eye. I sleep less than i used to because I’m peeking in on the baby monitor,” James Levy said.
Connor is the youngest of three, and the Levy family is staying strong.
“We’ve always done everything as a team, you know, we lean on each other and make sure that we’re okay,” James Levy said.
Now their hockey family is stepping in. James Levy is the youth director for Grand Strand In-line Hockey Roller Program. The Grand Strand Adult Hockey League is holding a benefit Saturday to help offset the financial strain the Levy family is facing due to medical costs.
The fundraiser is Saturday at 10 a.m. at the hockey rink in Market Common located on Emmens Avenue. There will be a draft tournament, bake sale, raffle, and music. A GoFundMe has also brought in thousands for the family.
“This was something that as soon as one of our guys found out, what were going on with Connor, it was put together before I realized that everything was happening. That’s a really special feeling when strangers see what’s going on and want to help. It’s really nice,” James Levy said.
James Levy said the biggest thing is raising awareness for AVM.