Baby Lynlee was born on the 6th of June, 2016, but 12 weeks prior to her birthday, she was taken out of her mother’s womb for a procedure that would save her life
When Margaret Boemer was 16 months pregnant with Lynlee, she went in for a routine ultrasound and found out that there was something wrong with her baby daughter.
“They saw something on the scan, and the doctor came in and told us that there was something seriously wrong with our baby and that she had a sacrococcygeal teratoma,” she told CNN. “And it was very shocking and scary, because we didn’t know what that long word meant or what diagnosis that would bring.”
“To think that I might lose [the baby] was very hard”
This wasn’t the first time Boemer received bad news about her pregnancy. She had initially been pregnant with twins, but lost one baby before the second trimester.
“It was a big shock and we were scared,” Boemer told CBS News. “I had just suffered a miscarriage the prior year. To think that I might lose another baby was very hard.”
What is sacrococcygeal teratoma (SCT)?
Sacrococcygeal teratoma, according to the University of California, San Francisco, is a tumor found in newborns found at the base of the tailbone. It occurs in 1 out of every 35,000 births, and is more common in female than in male babies. Though this tumor can grow very large, it’s not usually cancerous.
“Some of these tumors can be very well-tolerated, so the fetus has it and can get born with it and we can take it out after the baby’s born,” Dr. Darrell Cass of Texas Children’s Fetal Center said. “But about half of the time, they cause problems for the fetus and it’s usually causing problems because of a blood flow problem.”
Cass explained that the tumor and the baby end up competing for blood flow, and sometimes the tumor “wins”, and the baby dies. As Boemer’s baby had a large tumor that was cutting off her blood supply and causing her heart to shut down, doctors had to intervene.
Find out how the doctors saved baby Lynlee’s life on the next page.