One mom went in for an ultrasound, and the image looked as though the baby was blowing a large bubble. That bubble turned out to be a tumor growing off the unborn baby’s lip, and her family was terrified. Life-saving surgery was carried out while the baby was still in the womb.
Tammy Gonzalez could see the mass growing right above her unborn baby’s mouth. “Is that on me or the baby?” she asked the ultrasound technician.
It turned out to be on the baby– a large tumor known as a teratoma. It was growing from the fetus’ soft palate, and was the size of a peach.
The teratoma increased the risk of miscarriage because tumors like this can grow very rapidly. At 17 weeks, Gonzalez was told she could terminate the pregnancy. The mother-to-be was devastated, but doctors offered a lifeline: endoscopic surgery in the womb.
“I said, ‘I want to do this,'” Gonzalez says. “Let’s do this.”
Dr. Ruben Quintero performed the surgery with the aid of a tiny camera. He was able to remove the tumor from the baby’s palate. Gonzalez, who was awake and anesthetized during the procedure, watched the surgery on the ultrasound monitor with bated breath.
With a small cut, the large tumor floated away. “It was amazing,” she said. “It was like a 500-ton weight lifted off of me.”
The tumor and the baby remained in the womb for the rest of the pregnancy. When Gonzalez gave birth to Leyna, the tumor had shriveled to the size of a Ritz cracker. Leyna, however, was perfect.
“And she’s perfectly fine,” Gonzalez said of her almost two-year-old. “She has a tiny scar on the roof of her mouth. She talks; she drinks. She is my little miracle child.”
Source: ABC News Go