Born without a lung, toddler’s heart stapled to her ribcage to stop it from moving in her chest
She was diagnosed with the congenital disorder scimitar syndrome and the structural abnormality, Tetralogy of Fallot
Even before giving birth, Amie Jarvis and Tom Stearne knew that their baby, which they later named Gabriella, would have birth defects; five months into their pregnancy, a routine scan discovered abnormalities in their unborn child.
“She was diagnosed with the congenital disorder scimitar syndrome and the structural abnormality, Tetralogy of Fallot, placing huge strain on her heart,” said a Daily Mail report.
On top of that, she was born without a left lung, which causes her heart to dangerously move out of place.
But the little one’s suffering doesn’t end there; she also had to be constantly ventilated after also being diagnosed with bronchomalacia, a condition caused by weak cartilage in the walls of the bronchial tubes.
“Doctors originally hoped Gabriella could be supported from her home in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire,” the report said. “But by September last year when she was four month’s old, her health deteriorated when she began having seizures which caused her to stop breathing.”
She was first taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn, Norfolk. But soon she was transferred to Great Ormond Street Hospital for a pioneering surgery.
“She was in Cardiac Intensive Care Unit where she has had numerous operations. She had her heart repaired and stapled to her chest bones so it doesn’t move about.
“She has also had a prosthetic lung inserted. This is to support her as she grows and to stop her other organs moving around.”
After the operation, Gabriella’s health have made great progress, and have since returned home and reunited with her sisters.
“Even five years ago they wouldn’t have been able to do what they have done for her,” said Amie. “It’s because all the things she has are rare by themselves but together they’re unheard of.
“I don’t want to say she has been a bit of a guinea pig but she has because of all the different things that she has had done.
“It’s amazing what the doctors and nurses have done and we’re forever indebted to them.”
But like all medical procedures, the costs pile up. Now the family has since set up a crowd funding website hoping to accumulate £5,000 to help buy a people carrier needed to transport Gabriella and all of her medical equipment.
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