Parents, Stuart and Emma Labuschagne, experienced the scare of a lifetime when their 14-week-old son, Michael, went into cardiac arrest at 5 a.m. on March 16th of this year. In that moment, Michael's mother thought she had lost him forever.
Michael was quickly transported to the hospital with his parents desperately holding onto any hope there was left. The parents recall watching Michael struggle to breathe as the EMTs did everything they could to stabilize him. Soon after, Michael stopped breathing altogether.
Being oxygen-deprived for nine minutes, upon arriving at the hospital, he was quickly placed in a medically-induced coma. Doctors warned Stuart and Emma that even if by some miracle Michael pulled through, the lack of oxygen probably did some pretty major damage to his brain.
After a brain scan, results showed that Michael's brain seemed to have survived the event. His heart, on the other hand, was not in good shape. Doctors found a rare tumor, called a cardiac fibroma, which reportedly was palm-sized and had attached to the inside of Michael's heart. Not being able to fight the tumor, Michael's heart raced uncontrollably before going into cardiac arrest.
On day five of being in the induced coma, doctors lessened his sedatives to see if he would wake up. To everyone's surprise, Michael soon woke up with a smile on his face upon seeing his father, Stuart.
As miraculous as it was to see Michael awake and aware of his surroundings, doctors knew they had to work fast and quickly gave Michael a pacemaker. The pacemaker made things difficult for Michael; he couldn't sit or hold his head upright. Michael's mother says the pacemaker is the size of the palm of her hand, which is obviously uncomfortable for the baby but "he is amazing. You wouldn't know looking at him that he is fighting this," she explains.
Now, Michael needs heart surgery to remove the tumor and the family will need to travel from the United Kingdom to the United States to have it done when Michael is 16 months old. To help offset the cost, they have created a GoFundMe page which has already gotten over US$217,000 in donations.
We wish the family and baby Michael the best of luck on his upcoming surgery.