Source CBS4 Denver, September 30, 2019
A baby girl, born weighing just over a pound, has a better chance at a healthy life after having a hole in her heart closed. Doctors at Children’s Hospital Colorado made the repair through one tiny incision, rather than open-heart surgery.
With prematurity often comes problems. Luckily, Mandie cleared one hurdle with a less risky procedure.
“It’s not what we had in mind,” said Kirstin Hoffman about the very early birth of her first child.
Baby Mandie is not much bigger than a hot dog bun. She is so tiny, her footprint can fit on her father’s thumb.
“I was scared for how small she was,” Kirstin told CBS4 Health Specialist Kathy Walsh.
Mandie was born to Kirstin and Trent Hoffman at 25 weeks gestation. She was 11 inches long, an inch shorter than a ruler and weighed just over a pound.
“She had like all these wires and tubes everywhere. I was scared,” Kirstin said.
Babies that premature often have medical issues. One pressing problem for Mandie was her heart.
“Ductus arteriosus is a tube that every baby, before they’re born, has to have, but it usually closes a few days or a few weeks of birth,” said Dr. Gareth Morgan, congenital interventional cardiologist and Director of the Heart Institiute’s Cardiac Cath Lab at Children’s.
Mandie’s didn’t close and allowed blood to flow in the wrong direction.
“It effectively floods the lungs with extra blood and stops the lungs from functioning as well as they can,” explained Morgan.
The problem can be fixed with open-heart surgery. But Morgan performed a much less invasive procedure.
Through a small incision in Mandie’s groin, he fed a catheter through a blood vessel to the heart. A tiny, wire mesh device was placed to close the hole.
Doctors hope for the best for Mandie.
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