Sumary of Baby girl is spared a lifetime of paralysis after operation inside the WOMB:
- A follow-up MRI showed the youngster was at risk of developing brain damage due to a build-up of spinal fluid in her skull..
- Her mother Rebecca was transferred to the specialist foetal John Hopkins hospital in Maryland weeks later to have the intricate operation, which has only been carried out a few dozen times worldwide The 37-year-old was told the procedure had to be done within a four-week window between 23 and 26 weeks pregnant..
- It often leads to nerve damage that can cause paralysis in the legs, incontinence and, in some cases, spinal fluid to leak into the skull and cause brain damage..
- The eight-hour operation involved cutting open Ms Malkie’s uterus to allow the doctors access to Emily and draining away amniotic fluid that surrounded the baby..
- Emily Malkie, from Pennsylvania, in the US, was diagnosed with spina bifida following an ultrasound at just 16 weeks She avoided a lifetime of paralysis after receiving pioneering spinal surgery — while still in the womb Her mother Rebecca, 37, was transferred to the specialist foetal John Hopkins hospital in Maryland to have the intricate operation, which has only been carried out a few dozens times worldwide..
- Her first scare came during a checkup at 16 weeks which revealed Emily had five times the normal amount of an enzyme present in the brain and spinal cord in her blood — a tell-tale sign of spina bifida..
- Doctors told us that she could be severely brain damaged, have learning difficulties or trouble walking – I thought to myself I don’t think I can raise a special needs child..
- ‘We were transferred to a specialist hospital that told us about foetal surgery, which we had never heard of, and it’s amazing what that surgery has done for my daughter..
- We always hoped and prayed she would be a completely normal baby but never expected it to actually happen.’ During the eight-hour surgery, in April 2019, surgeons made an eight inch incision across Ms Malkie’s stomach and accessed Emily through creating three small holes in the uterus….