LOS ANGELES (AFP) -A six-day old premature baby has become the youngest infant to receive a heart transplant at a US hospital, doctors and her proud parents said Thursday.
Baby Oliver Crawford underwent the operation at Phoenix Children’s Hospital in Arizona after being born seven weeks ahead of schedule with a heart defect which meant her parents didn’t expect him to survive.
“The doctors had very little hope that he would survive the pregnancy, and when our water broke at 33 weeks, we were prepared to deliver a still born baby,” said Caylyn Otto, the infant’s mother.
“But he came out fighting,” she added in a sta-tement released by the hospital.
The baby is recovering in hospital after being born on January 5.
His mother and father Chris Crawford were first alerted to the problem after a prenatal exam at 20 weeks showed a defect in the tiny baby’s heart, called dilated cardiomyopathy.
It was confirmed four weeks later. “The left ventricle was huge for a 24-week-old,” paediatric cardiologist Dr Christopher Lindblade told the Arizona Republic, adding: “It was massive.”