When she was pregnant with her daughter Abigail Rose Beutler, doctors told Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler, a pro-life Republican from Washington state, that her baby had a potentially fatal diagnosis that would claim her life shortly after birth.
Beutler posted a message on Facebook last June saying her unborn child had been diagnosed with Potter’s Syndrome, a condition which prevents the child’s kidneys from developing properly and is typically fatal for the baby.
In Potter’s syndrome, the unborn baby has an atypical physical appearance as the result of oligohydramnios, a decrease in amniotic fluid volume that causes developmental problems and babies with Potter’s Syndrome typically die within a couple days of being born.
But Dr. Jessica Bienstock at Johns Hopkins Hospital was willing to try an unconventional procedure, and Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA) and her husband, Daniel, now have a happy, healthy one-year old. Then, in July, Beutler said Abigail was doing well two weeks following her birth and she has continued to progress.
This week, Abigail & Dr. Bienstock were reunited – in the House chamber of all places. Speaker Boehner paused House business to welcome them:
“Let me take this opportunity to recognize a special guest who is in our nation’s capital today.
“Dr. Jessica Bienstock is the Residency Program Director for the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
“In her career, she has delivered nearly 1,000 babies. One of them is well-known to us, and she is Abigail Rose Beutler, who of course is the daughter of our friend…
“We’re all familiar with Abigail’s story, and the odds that she overcame.
“If she is a happy, healthy miracle, Dr. Bienstock is the miracle worker who helped give the gift of hope and life to this family.
“I think our House owes a debt of gratitude to her and to all of our doctors, nurses and medical professionals.”