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Jameson is a little champ: How my nephew is dealing with heart surgery

Jameson Unger soon after heart surgery. (click for larger version)
May 06, 2013
About 4 million babies are born each year in the U.S., and 150,000 babies are born with birth defects. I used to take the miracle of birth for granted – until my nephew, Jameson Unger, was born April 18 and needed corrective heart surgery.

Jameson is a champ. He was airlifted in one of the neonatal helicopters to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston moments after he was born. The following day, he underwent nearly five hours of open heart surgery.

On April 23, he moved from cardiac intensive care to the step-down unit. And on April 26, he was home.

Amazing, caring nurses and doctors at Children's Healthcare did all they could to keep family near Jameson during his recovery. Family and friends prayed from afar and Jameson responded to each portion of his extensive corrective heart surgery with the best possible outcome.

About 14 days after his heart surgery, Jameson Unger was off the feeding tube. (click for larger version)
"I am so incredibly grateful for everyone who works in a hospital," his mom Hillary said. "From the saints in the cardiac ICU … to the people who cook the food or clean the floors."

I'm happy to report that all is going perfectly with Jameson.

We knew that Jameson would be born with heart defects because of prenatal diagnosis, so we were prepared, but it's emotional seeing a newborn just hours old in such a fragile state.

Jameson is getting stronger every day – thanks to the prayers of friends, the care and special attention at Children's, the love of his family and the miracle of life. He is a champ in my book. We'll spoil him, and I'm sure he will get a pass on some of his future mischiefs.

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Tags: Community & Outreach

  1. report print email
    May 07, 2013 | 11:51 AM

    Love thus Aldo... It made me cry. I'm so glad he's such a little trooper & has so many people who love him.

    Mary Ann James
    Antioch Tn
  2. report print email
    May 07, 2013 | 12:16 PM

    I am the luckiest lady to be sweet Jameson's aunt. My family and I cannot express our gratitude to everyone at children's hospital at egelston. Every doctor, nurse, orderly, everyone was amazing to us. Knowing that Jameson was in amazing hands gave us all immense comfort during the scary times of leading up to his surgery and during surgery. How lucky were all of us to live in this city where the best of care was in our reach. Egelston was so helpful to my sister and brother in law while Jameson was in the cardiac intensive care, they even were able to have them sleep down the hall in a sleeping room overnight so that they would be right near him. When they moved him to the step down unit, they were able to sleep in the same room with him. Every detail of his care was explained to all of us, patiently, until we all were comfortable with what to do upon his release. I am so happy to report that Jameson is doing amazing, and a happy, loving little guy. We were all nervous that maybe he wouldn't bond with us since he would be in hospital for a while, but that wasn't the case. CHOA was so amazing at making sure Jameson was touched, held, cuddled as soon as he was able to. We were so happy to be able to do those things with him. We all have the upmost respect for everyone that works at this amazing place. We ask if you keep Jameson in you thoughts or prayers, to please also think of and pray for every other child there.

    Coliene belle
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