After doctors looked at Grant on his 18-week ultrasound, they told his parents that he probably would not survive birth. Cartilage blocked his upper airways, and his lungs were swelling. Later, doctors discovered that he had no vocal cords and probably would never talk.
“It was very earth-shattering for us,” his mother, Andrea Hasse, said. “We were given a 1 to 3 percent chance of survival. We clung to that 3 percent.”
Doctors found that the unborn Michigan boy had a very rare condition that completely blocked his upper airways so that he would be unable to breathe when he was born, according to the Associated Press.
Despite Grant’s near-impossible chances, his parents, Andrea and Tadd Hasse, fought for their son’s life. They found a specialist at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor to help their son, the AP reports.
When Andrea reached 27 weeks, doctors decided it was time for Grant to be born. Doctors began to deliver Grant via C-section and performed surgery on his airway at the same time, according to the report. Dr. Glenn Green, a pediatric airway surgeon, opened Grant’s windpipe below the blockage in his neck while he was partially still in the womb. Green then inserted a breathing tube and attached a handheld ventilator as Grant was pulled from the womb and transferred to a breathing machine, the AP reports. Grant weighed just 3 pounds.
The little boy faced dozens of surgeries, but he and his parents continued to fight for his life. Then another obstacle presented itself: Doctors discovered that Grant did not have vocal cords, according to the AP. Dr. Green came to the rescue again, performing a new type of surgery to refashion a voice box and vocal cords for Grant using his own tissue, the article reports.
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Again Grant pulled through the surgeries. His parents took him to speech therapy to help him learn to speak. After just one session, the little boy surprised his parents by saying his first word, “hop.”
“We couldn’t believe it!” Andrea Hasse said. “We looked at each other stunned and Grant acted like it was no big deal!”
Though the report does not mention abortion, doctors today commonly suggest it for babies with conditions such as Grant’s. LifeNews has reported many parents’ stories about medical staff mentioning or even pressuring them to abort because their unborn baby had a disability or a fatal diagnosis. But it’s stories like Grants – and dozens of others – that show how choosing life can bring blessings beyond many families’ imaginings.
Grant will turn 4 years old on Saturday. He can now say more than a dozen words, including “mama” and “dada.”
“We don’t really sweat the small stuff. We celebrate every single day that our son is here and is OK,” Andrea Hasse told the AP.