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Ava, born 2008

I was pregnant with my second child and on a regular ultrasound the doctor found something wrong with my baby's heart. I was sent to UMAS in Little Rock to better understand what was wrong. The doctor determined that my baby had Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. I had never heard of this and no one in my family had any heart problems.


Ava was born on May15, 2008 at UMAS, 6lbs 10oz and was rushed to Arkansas Children’s Hospital. She was in the NICU for one week. The doctors told me that she had to have 3 surgeries with in 4 years. I was very heart broken and did not understand why this had to happen to my baby. Ava had her 1st surgery (Norwood) at a week old. She did very well during the surgery but had to stay at Arkansas Children’s for a month for feeding issues. The doctors ordered a swallow study and Ava she was on thick liquids for her bottle. They also put a GI button to help her with her nutrition. Ava was doing great and the doctor was very pleased with her and how much she is growing.


Ava's second surgery (Glenn) was when she was 6 months old and was only in the hospital for seven days. Ava did well with no problems and the doctors were pleased with her growth.


Her third surgery (Fontan) was in the end of July in 2012 when she was four years old. She stayed at Arkansas Children’s for about a month as she was having problems with pleural effusions.


Today, Ava is doing great! She’s not off of the feeding tube but someday she will.


Story by Ava’s mom, Rebecca - Arkansas

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