'My wife went through 33 hours of labour to deliver my stillborn baby'
"If my child needs to die, then it should not have to be in vain." Read this heart-breaking story of Trisomy 18 in babies...
Singapore husband Eugene Wee recently shared a heart-breaking post about losing his baby to stillbirth. Three weeks back, his wife had to endure 33 hours of painful labour to deliver her stillborn baby.
He writes, “We lost our five-month-old child, just three weeks ago.”
“The child had Trisomy 18 – a rare chromosome condition that often came with severe mental disabilities, multiple physical deformations and in most cases it was incompatible with life.
“Our child was all three.
“It was a case in 6,000 pregnancies.”
Losing Baby to Trisomy 18
Doctors offered no hope to the couple, and requested for the full foetus to be retained for future research and studies.
“We knew what it meant,” writes Eugene.
“It was a request for her to suffer and go through hours of painful labour – just as any mother would go through in delivery – but for her only to deliver a stillborn child.
“She had endured through the emotional pain, but yet this meant that she will have to go through even more – a whole lot more of immense physical pain – just so the child’s body will be intact for medical research.”
His wife, Puu Kanokrat, was shattered, but calm. She replied, “If my child needs to die, then it should not have to be in vain.”
So she bravely endured more than 30 hours of painful labour, and rejected surgical options, just to ensure that the foetus was as intact as possible.
“After 33 hours, the child was delivered in silence and the foetus was rushed off to the medical facility for preservation.”
Eugene remains inspired by his wife – her love, devotion and sacrifice.
These words from him are achingly beautiful:
“Dear medical students of Chiangmai University, if you are reading this, this will be the story behind the foetus with trisomy 18.
“A story of faith, love and sacrifice, to journey with you, in hopes that you will better mankind.
“To my wife, my hero, my better half :
“Your faith, your conviction, your values, your sacrifice has inspired me to embark on this journey to make a difference.”
Here is Eugene’s full post on Facebook:
Trisomy 18 in Babies
Trisomy 18 is a chromosomal abnormality.
Sometimes the mother’s egg or the father’s sperm contains the wrong number of chromosomes. As the egg and sperm combine, this mistake is passed on to the baby.
In the case of trisomy 18, the baby has three copies of chromosome 18. This causes many of the baby’s organs to develop in an abnormal way.
Trisomy 18 is the second most common type of trisomy syndrome, after trisomy 21 (Down syndrome). Many babies with trisomy 18 don’t survive past the second or third trimester of pregnancy.
Sadly, about half of the babies who are carried full-term are stillborn. Of those babies who do survive, less than 10% live to reach their first birthday. Children who do live past that milestone often have severe health problems that require a large amount of care.
Symptoms of Trisomy 18 in Babies
Babies with trisomy 18 are often born very small and frail. They typically have many serious health problems and physical defects, including:
- Cleft palate
- Clenched fists with overlapping fingers that are hard to straighten
- Defects of the lungs, kidneys, and stomach/intestines
- Deformed feet
- Feeding problems
- Heart defects
- Low-set ears
- Severe developmental delays
- Chest deformity
- Slowed growth
- Small head (microcephaly)
- Small jaw (micrognathia)
- Weak cry
Diagnosis of Trisomy 18 in Babies
A doctor may suspect trisomy 18 during a pregnancy ultrasound. More precise methods involve taking cells from the amniotic fluid (amniocentesis) or placenta (chorionic villus sampling) and analysing their chromosomes.
After birth, the doctor may suspect trisomy 18 based on the child’s face and body. A blood sample can be taken to look for the chromosome abnormality. The chromosome blood test can also help determine how likely the mother is to have another baby with trisomy 18.
There is no cure for trisomy 18. Treatment for trisomy 18 consists of supportive medical care to provide the child with the best quality of life possible.
Additional Source: WebMD