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Justin, 2002

Justin, born 2002

Our son, Justin, was born on July 11, 2002. About seven hours after he was born, we received the devastating news that he had Transposition of the Great Arteries. He was taken by ambulance to UCLA. I have never been so scared in my life.


Once in the NICU, he received medication to keep the hole in his heart open and was intubated the next day. At seven days old, he had the arterial switch surgery performed by Dr. Plunkett. His chest remained open for nine days due to swelling. He stayed in the CICU for about 11 days and then to PICU. Justin was intubated for seven weeks total. He had severe edema, a damaged diaphragm, and several other complications. After eight weeks in the ICU environment, he was moved to an observation room for two days, then to a regular room. He then had three seizures but they didn't find anything wrong. After nine long heartbreaking weeks in the hospital, we were finally able to take our baby home on September 10, 2002. He came home on seven medications and a feeding tube. We were able to get him off the tube after three days and within a few months he was off all medicine. We found out later he had developed Torticollis while at the hospital but with a lot of work, he recovered from it.


Justin is a very healthy six year old boy now. He has delays with his gross and fine motor skills but has come a long way with physical and occupational therapy. Our son has endured so much but he is a miracle and a blessing in our lives. He is a bright, beautiful, and healthy child. We thank God every day for our precious boy.


Story by Justin's mom, Tonia - California

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