Monday, 29 Dec, 2008 Health & Fitness

Two-Weeks-Old Baby Underwent Brain Surgery


A two-weeks-old baby from UK had a brain tumor surgery. Madison Quartarone is thought to be the youngest patient to undergo such operation. Just a few years after the baby's birth, midwife noticed that the head of the baby girl had swollen and she was drowsy.

Shortly after birth, doctors found that the baby had a benign tumor, which gathered fluid and grew. They said that the baby would die without surgical intervention in just weeks. The girl was taken to Great Ormond Street Hospital, located in London. There doctors performed seven operations in seven weeks. Madison underwent a total of three embolization procedures (non-surgical, minimally-invasive procedure, in which doctors use glue to block off vessels that provide liquid to the tumor of blood).

According to Dominic Thompson, who treated the infant, it was rather hard to take the decision to operate the girl, due to the fact that during the surgery there is a risk of cutting off a blood vessel that carries blood to the brain or causing the infant to have a stroke. After the first two operations the doctors were able to cut off almost all blood vessels that supplied the tumor and after the third surgery they managed to cut off every vein. Afterwards, scans showed that the tumor had significantly shrunk.

Now Madison is eight weeks old. Doctors say that the girl recovered really fast and was able to celebrate Christmas at home in Bedford. She was born on November 1, her mother is the 20-year-old restaurant worker Charlene Smith and father the 25-year-old factory worker Nick Quartarone.

Despite the fact that the surgery went well, the baby will have to come back to the hospital in the New Year, so doctors could scan her brain to analyze whether the tumor had shrunk. Mr. Thompson noticed that the operation was "groundbreaking."

"Embolization in itself is quite common but there are unique aspects in Madison's case and we are hoping that the procedure will be enough and she will not need a further operation," he said, adding that it is very unusual to b born with such a big tumor, because there is little chance that a tumors shows itself in the first months of life.

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