Cleveland Clinic Successfully Performs Risky Fetal Surgery
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CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Clinic is the second hospital to successfully remove a tumor from a baby’s heart in its mother’s womb.
“I have people who tell me it’s definitely a miracle that he’s a gift from God. And he’s supposed to be doing something crazy in this world, ”Samantha Drinnon said.
Ryland Drinnon is now in good health and is 5 months old. But at 6 months in his mother’s womb, the odds were not in his favor.
“In April, we found out that Ryland had a cardiac teratoma, which is a tumor that grows on his heart,” Samantha said.
Her condition is a problem that doctors don’t often see.
“They are incredibly rare. Overall, they only represent one in 40,000 births and having it in this heart location is much less common, ”said Darrell Cass, general manager of fetal surgery and fetal care at the Cleveland Clinic. .
What is even rarer is the successful removal of this tumor – the procedure has only been performed a few times around the world and has only been successful once.
“The odds were absolutely against us and we were confident that we had put together the right team,” said Cass.
After discussing and weighing the options. The doctors and Samantha agreed that surgery was the way to go. On May 7, fetal surgery was performed, lasting about four hours.
“The doctor did what he could do on a baby after birth. He made an incision in the middle of the chest to open up the rib cage and expose this little baby’s heart to help lift the tumor off the heart, ”Cass said.
The operation was a success for the second time in history.
“Some of the nurses who were in my room told me they were crying and still crying tears because of it. Just because it was also the craziest thing they had ever experienced, ”Samantha said.
After the withdrawal, Ryland was put back into his mother’s womb, having grown up for 10 weeks before deciding to go out earlier.
“At 36 weeks and three days he made his debut,” Samantha said.
A world he has already impacted, and soon she will tell him this heroic story.
“One day he’s going to ask ‘what’s that crazy place on my chest?’ and I’m going to tell her that “you went through something crazy that no baby can really say he went through,” Samantha said.
Ryland is in good health, but Samantha said they always come back for blood tests and to make sure her heart is working properly.
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