Baby born without back of skull defies odds and survives
“They just kept saying, ‘Oh he’ll be born but he’ll only live for a couple minutes or if you go through labor, he’ll probably pass away during labor,’” said mom Alyssa Reidhead.
When Alyssa and her husband Ben went to their doctors at 23 weeks to find out about the sex of their baby, instead of knowing whether it was a boy or a girl, the couple found out that the back portion of their unborn child was missing, and that he will only be able to live for a couple of minutes upon delivery.
Their baby suffered from a rare condition called encephalocele.
“They just kept saying, ‘Oh he’ll be born but he’ll only live for a couple minutes or if you go through labor, he’ll probably pass away during labor,’” said Alyssa Reidhead in a Fox report.
Brokenhearted, the couple from Utah, instead of buying the essentials for a newborn child, bought a casket and prepared for the worst.
Ben recalled the days leading up to the delivery of the baby, saying he was terrified “not because we didn’t want him to come but just because we were afraid of losing him.”
But then it was time for baby Will to be delivered via C-section, and he came to the world like most healthy babies, twitching and screaming.
“He’s not hooked up to anything,” Alyssa told Fox. “He’s breathing fine. He’s lifting his head. He’s moving around. He’s pretty much acting like a completely normal baby.”
When he was delivered, the doctors also found further complications: baby Will suffers from cutis aplasia, a condition characterised by a missing back portion of the skull, and his brain is covered by a thin layer of membrane.
Finding the strength in their little fighter, Alyssa and Ben are committed to providing the best care for baby Will. They have since set up a GoFundMe page to help raise funds for their medical bills.
What is encephalocele?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), encephalocele occurs when the neural tube that is supposed to form the brain and spinal cord during the third and fourth weeks of pregnancy does not close properly.
Symptoms of encephalocele include:
- Buildup of too much fluid in the brain
- Complete loss of strength in the arms and legs
- An unusually small head
- Uncoordinated movement of the voluntary muscles, such as those involved in walking and reaching
- Developmental delay
- Vision problems
- Mental and growth retardation Seizures
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