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VATERS/VACTERL

A brief story about our VACTERL experience.

Baby Braydon; Actual size=240 pixels wide

Braydon was born on May 31, 1995. Before his birth, we found out through a routine OB ultrasound that he was going to have some birth defects. The medical world classified him as a VATERS Association baby. His birth defects are mostly anatomical problems that we were repeatedly told were "fixable" through various surgeries and procedures.

His birth defects include congenital scoliosis, rib anomalies, bilateral hip dysplasia, a missing coccyx, a fatty filum/tethered spinal cord, a horseshoe shaped kidney, two ureters in the left kidney, hydronephrosis, anal stenosis, a bicuspid aortic valve, sinus arrhythmia, a right clubfoot with two extra toes, a hairy, dimpled mole on his left knee cap, and a single umbilical artery.

VATERS/VACTERL is a rare condition. Each VATERS/VACTERL child is unique and should be treated in the medical community that way. Finding competent care for your child is a MUST. These children have so much strength and determination. One mother once said that what God took away from their physical strength, He more than made up with in personality and determination. These children tend to excel academically and are very bright and full of love!

The VACTERL Network is having a great fundraiser.  They are raising money to sponsor the next VACTERL family conference, being held in Philadelphia in the summer of 2009.  Check out this link for a great Holiday Gift opportunity!

Click here for the VACTERL Network Wreath fundraiser

Growth update - October 2008...  The vast majority of VACTERL patients are small stature.  We met with an endocrinologist recently to make sure Braydon's growth was on track for him, or if he was missing growth hormones/potential.  The good news is the doc believes his hormone levels are normal (took blood to make sure) and that his bone age is younger than he really is.  She predicted he is about 2 years behind in bone age.  They also took a hand xray to determine a more accurate bone age.  I hope to get results of these tests soon.
 
Bottom line is he is growing, but at his own pace.  Early stages of puberty at age 13.5 years.  He weighs 80 pounds (was 76 pounds at surgery last week, so not sure which scale is most accurate) and is 4'7-3/4" tall.  We'll go back in 6 months for another weight and height check.  Glad to hear he's "normal"!