Tammy Gonzalez was facing a difficult decision. She didn’t have much time, and she needed to act now.
She felt her heart pounding in her chest as she signed the paperwork. But would she regret this decision?
Tammy couldn’t wait for her first ultrasound appointment. She was excited to see her baby.
On the day of the doctor’s appointment, the mother-to-be headed to the clinic with a big smile on her face. Little did she know what awaited her.
As Tammy chatted with the sonographer about her plans for the weekend, she rubbed some jelly on her pregnant belly so she could see the baby.
But when the sonographer glanced at the screen, her face suddenly went pale. Something wasn’t right.
The sonographer explained to Tammy that the scan had shown a strange shape next to the fetus. Was she having twins?
“Oh my God!” thought Tammy. Finding the money to provide for two babies would be difficult for her and her husband. But that wasn’t all.
“Maybe we could sell the car. I like walking anyway,” Tammy thought. Then, the sonographer’s coworker came and looked at Tammy. She had a concerned look on her face.
“Mrs. Gonzalez,” she said. “We have some news for you.”
The doctor explained that they had found a growth in her womb and showed the anomaly on the screen. They wanted to run a few tests to confirm their suspicions.
“Is it on me?” Tammy asked. “Or the baby?”
The tests confirmed that Tammy had a rapidly-growing teratoma made of different types of tissues in her womb. It was ballooning from the fetus’s mouth.
Could she save her baby?
This is a very rare condition, and it occurs in around 1 out of every 100,000 births. Teratomas may be benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
So what did this mean for Tammy’s health?
The doctor explained to Tammy that the condition posed a great risk to her and the baby. But she didn’t want to give up on her baby without a fight.
She saw several doctors, but they all told her the same thing.
It wasn’t until she met Dr. Ruben Quintero did she get some hope. He was the first doctor to give her baby a chance at life.
What did he suggest she do?
Quintero informed her that there was a procedure he could look into that might save her child. However, it was risky and never before attempted.
He proposed an endoscopic surgery to remove the teratoma.
“Let’s do this!” Tammy said. She was ready to do anything to save her child.
But while she was willing to try anything to save the life of her baby, Tammy was in pieces.
“It’s the most horrible feeling you could ever imagine,” Tammy said.
“Physically, emotionally, and mentally.” After what seemed like years, the day of the surgery finally came. So would she regret this decision?
The surgeons successfully removed the growth, and Tammy gave birth to a healthy baby girl.
But how did she feel after the procedure?
The only evidence of Tammy’s daughter’s difficult surgery was a small scar on her mouth. Otherwise, she’s perfectly healthy!
“She’s perfectly fine. My little miracle child!” Tammy said, sobbing. We know she’ll make an amazing mother!