Meet Our Miracle Kids
Born 13 weeks early, Allie weighed 2 pounds, 2 ounces. She was diagnosed at 16 days old with an infection that required surgeons to remove two-thirds of her small intestine. The infection also affected her brain, causing it to stop growing and leaving her with half of her cerebellum.
Today, Allie receives a number of therapies as well as intensive follow-up care with a team of more than 20 pediatric specialists at Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU. She has achieved amazing progress marked by accomplishments like learning to pedal a bicycle, consume food by mouth, and expand her vocabulary by leaps and bounds.
Blake currently sees 8 specialists at CHoR. He actually has 14 different diagnoses and is fed through a G-tube to ensure he maintains his weight and caloric intake. Blake may have extremely complex medical needs but he doesn't let it slow him down. His mom says he's always full of energy and ready to go!
Mireya and Jalen
In February of 2011, Mireya's parents noticed unexplained bruising on her body. It was later determined by doctors at Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU that the bruising was the first sign of something called severe aplastic anemia. Mireya was only 4 years old when she was diagnosed with this rare illness that acts a lot like cancer. Her only hope for a cure was a bone marrow transplant. After extensive testing of all her family members, they learned that her older brother, Jalen, who was just 6 years old, was a perfect donor match. Mireya would go on to receive two bone marrow transplants from her big brother, which was a very difficult procedure. Today, Mireya is in a new journey as part of the survivorship program, and Jalen is enjoying normal childhood activities while still staying very protective of his little sister.
Santiago was born at 24 weeks and 2 days gestation in March 2012. He spent a total of 161 days in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU. Thanks to the care he received as a newborn, he is doing well today and right on track with his developmental milestones. Santiago recently enjoyed becoming a big brother to baby Anina.
In the fall of 2013, at age 7, Anna was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Anna had been complaining of some abnormal symptoms and her mom, Cynthia, knew something wasn't right. Anna received radiation and chemotherapy at Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU. She likes to remember the fun things she did in the clinic - especially music therapy. In May 2014, Anna received a clear scan and is now cancer free!
After spending the first few weeks of his life in the Progressive Care Unit, Carter's parents learned that their son had a very rare genetic disorder called Tetrasomy 18p. "As parents our emotions were all over the place." remembered Carter's mom.
Carter has been a patient of Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU since he was one month old, and he receives occupational, physical therapy, speech, and feeding therapies on a weekly basis.
Carter enjoys visiting the mall to ride the train, listening to live music, and playing with trucks and cars. He loves his family and visiting with friends, and as a result wants to have a party almost every day!