Olivia, born 2004February 27, 2004 was the day our lives changed forever. We went for a routine ultrasound at 18 weeks and were told there was something very wrong with our baby's heart. We were told to consider termination but it was not an option for us. No one would talk to us about surgery. What we were told was "you can't fix what isn't there".
We were devastated, thinking we would deliver a baby who would die shortly after birth. We called our pediatrician that day to get advice on how to talk to our daughter about the baby's heart. Our pediatrician put us in touch with a pediatric cardiologist who gave us hope! Our cardiologist explained about a three staged surgery our baby would need and told us how well children with heart defects are doing these days.
Olivia was born July 19, 2004 with Pulmonary Atresia, Transposition of the Great Arteries, Heterotaxy and Asplenia. Her first surgery (BT Shunt) was done when she was less than two days old. She had the LADD procedure done at six weeks to correct her intestinal malrotation. They removed her appendix at the same time.
Olivia had her second open heart surgery (Glenn) at 4 months old. We anticipate that Olivia's final staged surgery (Fontan) will be a few years from now.
Olivia's organs are all swapped internally. Her heart is on the right hand side of her body, her liver is tranverse, and her appendix was on the wrong side. She also had intestinal malrotation.
Olivia has proven the naysayers wrong. She is developmentally on track and thriving!
To look at Olivia is to look at a true miracle - a gift from God. She has been such a blessing to our family. Every day we are thankful for the hope given to us!
Story by Olivia's mom, Tricia - Connecticut
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