Tina & Elliot

Elliot’s mother, Tina, describes her son’s story:

When I was 20 weeks pregnant with my second child, an ultrasound revealed that the baby had a right clubfoot and a malformation of the brain called Dandy Walker Malformation.  It was decided then that the baby would have to be born at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax, so that he would receive the best care available.  Monthly ultrasounds were then performed to ensure that the spinal fluid didn’t accumulate, something that can happen to babies with this malformation.  If this happens, the baby would be born with extensive brain damage or it can even be fatal.  Depending of which region of the brain would be affected, the baby could need assistance in breathing and eating when born.

It was hard for the whole family to deal with such a diagnosis.  A lot of prayers from family and friends helped us get through this ordeal and we were praying that our little baby would be born healthy.

I was moved to the IWK at 36 weeks since my doctor thought I could have the baby early.  At 37 weeks, little Elliot was born healthy and didn’t have to go to the NICU as previously thought.  An ultrasound of the brain done after the baby was a day old revealed that Elliot’s brain was normal. He will be closely followed by a neurosurgeon as there are still some concerns, but compared to the original diagnosis, this one was a lot brighter.  We were so pleased that our baby was the little miracle that we were praying for.

Elliot did have a clubfoot that needed to be corrected.  Casting started when Elliot was 2 days old and had to be done weekly.  We travelled over 700 km every week from PEI to get treatment for the clubfoot.  Elliot would require between 5-6 casts and many more appointments in the months to come for shoe fittings and assessments to correct his foot condition.

The cost of travelling adds up so quickly, and the Irving Oil Fuel the Care Program has been such a great help to our family.  With all the other stresses that come with taking care of two boys under 18 months, especially a newborn with medical issues, it is comforting to have a program that helps to cover some of the travel expenses.