Pediatric Surgery Patient Stories

Read inspiring stories of hope from patients and families treated at Nicklaus Children's Hospital.

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Francesca: Born August 19, 2019 at Nicklaus Children's Hospital

At their 20-week anatomy scan, Olivia Bittles and her husband Bobby learned their unborn baby had esophageal atresia, a genetic condition in which the esophagus does not connect directly to the stomach. This news came as a shock. Read this story.

South Florida surgeon helps children with airway disorders breathe easy

According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 15 million babies are born prematurely every year. Among the many complications these little ones face are airway disorders. Thanks to airway reconstruction performed by Dr. Brian Ho, little Elijah is able to breathe on his own without the support of a medical device. Read this story.

Patient of the Month: Charlie

After surviving a high-risk pregnancy with a set of twins, the Strombom’s were faced with yet another complication. Their third child, an unborn baby named Charlie, was diagnosed with a congenital pulmonary airway malformation (CPAM) and underwent two in utero interventions to allow for a full and healthy gestation period. Once delivered, the LifeFlight team from Nicklaus Children’s Hospital was on stand-by to transport Charlie from West Palm Beach to Miami. Read this story.

Logan's Journey with Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia

Logan Perry was born with congenital diaphragmatic hernia, a rare birth defect in which the diaphragm does not develop properly. Thanks to the experts at Nicklaus Children's Hospital, Logan had corrective surgery and is developing into a rambunctious toddler.  Read this story.

Bianca’s Journey to Being Pain Free

Bianca suffered from pain and a severe bowleg deformity for many years as a result of Blount’s disease, a growth disorder that affects the bones in children and young adults. Read this story.

Outpatient Surgery Success Story

Caludell noticed that 6 of her 11 children had belly buttons that stuck out, and they seemed to become more pronounced around the time they entered kindergarten. When her daughters started to become self-concious about how their belly buttons looked, Claudell was able to schedule all 6 umbilical repair surgeries on the same day at the Ambulatory Surgery Center. Read this story.

A happy surgical outcome for family of infant with Beckwith Wiedemann Syndrome

Alyssa Caulley talks about her experiences at Nicklaus Children's Hospital, where she decided to have her daughter's surgery for Beckwith Wiedemann Syndrome (BWS). Read this story.

Boy with Rare, Genetic Syndrome Returns Home to Trinidad After Complex Craniofacial Surgery

A team of surgeons from Nicklaus Children’s Hospital’s Craniofacial Center performed a complex reconstructive surgery on a seven year-old child that will improve his vision and ability to eat, as well as his appearance and overall quality of life. Read this story.

A Healthy Life Ahead for Elias

The family shared video clips of the quirky movements with Elias' pediatrician. The doctor immediately sent them to the nearest emergency room, where they ran a number of tests. They soon learned Elias was suffering from seizures due to cortical dysplasia, a congenital malformation in the brain which can lead to pediatric epilepsy conditions. Read this story.

Young Girl Born with Birthmark on Her Lip has Surgery that Will Change Her Life

Just a few weeks after Brianna was born, her mother noticed a red growth on her daughter’s upper lip.  Her pediatrician referred the family to specialists who diagnosed the growth as an Infantile Hemangioma. On December 7th, Dr. Chad Perlyn of Nickalus Children's Hospital, removed the hemangioma. Read this story.

Jose's SUPER Experience

From the very moment the Genes family arrived at Nicklaus Children’s for treatment until Jose Jr. was cleared to return home, Genes says the hospital made the experience for his son and family a positive one.   Read this story.

Ruby’s Journey to Cancer Free

Ruby began complaining of what she thought was a tummy ache. After two or three days with no improvement, her father made an appointment with a gastroenterologist at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, who discovered a mass in the child’s abdomen—it was cancer. Read this story.

Chase's Success Story

Chase, is the epitome of a high school student athlete. Despite his many accomplishments, he developed a medical condition as a pre-teen called pectus excavatum (also known as sunken chest) that was leaving him winded, especially when swimming and running long distances. Read this story.

Mauricio's Success Story

5-year-old Mauricio and his parents were transferred from Puerto Rico to Nicklaus Children's Hospital to treat a rare congenital condition as well as a gallbladder removal surgery. Read this story.

Avery's Success Story

While in Miami for Spring Break Avery became ill and was later diagnosed with an ovarian torsion. She underwent emergency surgery with Dr. Cathy Burnweit at Nicklaus Children's Hospital. Read this story.

Caitlyn's Success Story

Caitlyn was having sharp pains in the upper left corner of her stomach and side. An ultrasound led to the discovery of a tumor (a lesion) in her spleen. Dr. Malvezzi performed surgery to remove the lesion. Today Caitlyn feels amazing and no longer has pain, thanks to all the amazing doctors at Nicklaus Children's Hospital, formerly Miami Children's Hospital! Read this story.

Gabe's Success Story

After 2 weeks of high fevers, numerous blood tests and visits to the pediatrician's office, Gabe looked like a pin cushion full of bruises. He was admitted and released from several hospitals with fever and his parents were told he could have one of a hundred different viruses. When his parents took him to Nicklaus Children's Hospital they were able to solve the mystery and save his life! Read this story.

Melissa's Miracle Story

When Melissa was just a day old, she was diagnosed with a diaphragmatic hernia, a birth defect involving an abnormal opening in the diaphragm that results in abdominal contents moving into the chest cavity. Melissa was transported to NCH for emergency surgery to repair the baby’s diaphragm. Read this story.

Alexandra's Success Story

Alexandra was rushed to Nicklaus Children's Hospital, formerly Miami Children's Hospital, and had her appendix removed. The doctor told her that if she had waited any longer, she could have died. Read this story.

Reese's Success Story

After Reese’s birth in 2006, a prominent, bright red spot (hemangioma) appeared on her face, and around her eye. Reese began to receive monthly laser treatments to limit the growth and lighten or remove the large, prominent red vascular birthmark from her face. Read this story.

Alexa's Success Story

Alexa was treated by trauma nurses John and Paul, who put Alexa at ease and stayed with her throughout the day. After several tests and Xrays, physicians determined that in addition to her facial injuries, Alexa had a broken neck, a ruptured spleen, broken rib, punctured lung, cut liver and fractured hip. She received care at Nicklaus Children's from a team of healthcare experts who performed surgery on Alexa to realign her facial bones. Read this story.

Shannon's Miracle Story

As soon as she was born, 5-pound, 10-ounce Shannon Walsh was diagnosed with esophageal atresia. Airlifted to Nicklaus Children's Hospital, the pediatric surgeons repaired her esophagus with a new method that would require significanlty less time than traditional procedures. Read this story.

Jason's Pectus Excavatum Success Story

Jason Pivowar had been through a lot – including a total of four hospitalizations since undergoing what was supposed to be routine surgery at a Palm Beach area hospital in July. Following the summer surgery to correct pectus excavatum (a sunken chest), Jason experienced numerous complications, including an infection surrounding the lining of his heart, kidney stones caused by medications, problems with the corrective bar that had been surgically placed in his chest to raise his inverted sternum, and finally, a collapsed lung. Read this story.