The birth of a baby is often called the miracle of life, but that doesn’t begin to describe 8-month-old Elijah Alvarez. One couple is thankful the life of their baby was saved with a special surgery — in the womb.
Last July, when Elizabeth Rodriguez-Garcia of Salinas was 6-months pregnant, she went for a routine ultrasound. The scan revealed a large cyst on Elijah’s lung and doctors were unsure if the baby would survive.
“At that very moment, when they told us that we just both broke down in tears,” said Elijah’s father, Salvador Alvarez.
That’s when the family went to Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford, where physicians ynserted a shunt through Elizabeth and into Elijah’s lungs.
“It was definitely one of our more challenging cases, absolutely,” said Dr. Jane Chueh.
Three months later, when Elijah was born, doctors rushed him into surgery tp remove the cyst and most of his left lung. Without that surgery before birth, Elijah’s heart would have likely stopped beating.
Eight months later, Elijah is doing well and his parents are thankful.
“I like hearing when people that we don’t know come up to us and say your baby is so healthy. I say oh, my God, they don’t know what we’ve been through,” said Elijah’s mother Elizabeth.