The riveting story of 2-year-old Adrian, who was born with his heart outside of his chest. See the extraordinary surgery that saved his life! More from this episode.
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Adrian's Rare Heart Surgery Steven: I have think about if the surgery is not successful, the images that come to my mind is I’ll be watching my son for the first time after the surgery and not seeing his heart. Dr. Travis Stork: 2-year-old Adrian was born with a rare birth defect, his heart is located outside of his chest. The Doctors in his native Trinidad were unable to help him fortunately through the efforts of The International Kids Fund a non-profit organization that’s dedicated to helping children all over the World overcome serious illness. Adrian was brought to the Jackson Memorial Medical Center in Miami. Our cameras were given exclusive access to this rare surgery as Doctors fought to save his life. Steven: I’m very nervous and very frightened last night I didn’t sleep a wink. I know what’s happening, you’re getting sleepy. Dr. Eliot Rosenkranz: So you can see the heart has emerged so this is all missing right over here. Dr. Zubin Panthaki: What Doctor Rosenkranz’s is doing now is he’s dividing the upper part of the ribs from the lower portion and then he wants to slide the portion of the ribs together to the middle to recreate the middle of the chest wall. Dr. Eliot Rosenkranz: Look how high his diaphragm is, oh my gosh. Well I’m hoping I can primarily close a portion. Dr. Zubin Panthaki: He’s trying to re-close the bones over the front of the heart. Dr. Eliot Rosenkranz: That came together very easily. Dr. Zubin Panthaki: Now that they put the bones together temporarily, it increases the pressure inside the chest. They want to make that the heart’s still filled with blood, but the pressure’s too high, the blood won’t go into the heart and then it won’t be able to pump it so they waiting a few minutes to make sure it works before they do the final closure. The bones are already almost together and then if it works, we will just tie up all the wires in that will be-- Dr. Eliot Rosenkranz: Okay. I’m going to go ahead and just reopen this thing Dr. Zubin Panthaki: He’s got the ribs up under his index finger there and those metal wires you see crossing over the heart, those are the wires that’ll bring the bones together again. So far it looks like the heart was able to tolerate it okay. He’s going to close it permanently. Dr. Eliot Rosenkranz: So here’s the moment, all right so here we go. Everything went fine the nurse is just finishing getting him set up, okay? Steven: Doctor Rosenkranz walked in to the waiting lot and said the surgery’s over and he is fine, I was flying, I must be dreaming. Dr. Travis Stork: How does that feel watching that and reliving that moment? Steven: Watching it back was living with him with the problem all over again and now he’s like a new, brand new kid now from the form. Dr. Travis Stork: Do you have anything you want to say to Doctor Rosenkranz? Steven: There’s nothing I could say but to thank him enough for what he did, giving my son a normal life back. Dr. Travis Stork: Is Adrian out of the woods now? Is his heart protected and as he moves forward in life and grows bigger, is he safe from injury to his heart? Dr. Eliot Rosenkranz: We would certainly expect so, I think that the bones that are now in approximation to each other should heal, they should grow like other bones in his body and our anticipation is he’s home-free, he can do whatever he’s parents allow him do. Dr. Travis Stork: It’s been a few weeks since the surgery, let’s bring Adrian out and see how he’s doing. Hey buddy! Hey there, how are you? Adrian says “hi” to everyone. So Daddy, he looks like he’s doing pretty good? Steven: He’s doing excellent. Dr. Travis Stork: What’s the plan going forward here, when did you go back to Trinidad? Steven: We’re leaving back to Trinidad from next week. Dr. Travis Stork: Can we see your scar on your chest? Steven: You wanted to step out? Out we go. 1, 2, 3 show the belly. Dr. Travis Stork: Janelle Prieto is the Assistant Director of the International Kids Fund, that’s the charity who
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