Ayden Nate Lorne Family Photo

Ayden and Nate's story: Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

Brothers living with life-threatening heart disease

Perth brothers, Ayden and Nate were diagnosed with a life-threatening heart disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy when they were just 9 years old.

The news came as a complete shock. Ayden and Nate were strong athletes and hadn’t had any major health issues prior to the diagnosis.

For mum, Nikki Glover, her world was turned upside down. The doctors told her that her boys could face an early and sudden death.

“It took me about a week for it to really sink it, for it to really hit home,” says Nikki.

Between Ayden and Nate, they have had 12 heart operations in 15 years. And that’s not the end of it.

Nikki Glover and her sons

What is hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a life-threatening heart disease that causes the heart to enlarge and may lead to sudden cardiac death. It is the leading cause of cardiac death in children aged between 5 and 15.

It is also the leading cause of cardiac death in adults too, often showing up at age 40 to 50.

There is currently no treatment for this heart disease.

What research is the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute doing into hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?

Professor Livia Hool from the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute and her team from Western Australia have made a potential breakthrough discovery in the treatment of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. By targeting a calcium channel in the heart with medication, it could potentially both prevent and reverse the damage of the inherited heart disease which causes the heart to become dangerously large.

This could reduce the number of children that die from this condition and help boys like Ayden and Nate.

Professor Hool adds: “There are tens of thousands of Australians who have no idea they have this disease. If we could deliver a treatment and a way to reverse the damage to their hearts, this could save many lives and be life-changing.”

The next stage of this research is to take it to clinical trials. If proven effective, it could potentially save the lives of these boys and the lives of thousands of people around the world who suffer from this disease – but right now have no idea they are living with the condition. Help us take our research to the next levels.

Acknowledgement of Country

The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders past and present.

Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute - The Home of Heart Research for 30 Years