Healing Maddie’s Heart

As first-time parents, Holly and Keith were thrilled to welcome their beautiful baby girl, Maddie, in August 2016. Maddie’s first few months of life seemed to be completely normal. She was growing, eating, sleeping, and learning.

In December 2016, Maddie went in for a routine pediatric check-up where her pediatrician noted that she was underweight, weighing only nine pounds. Her weight was alarming because a four-month old baby typically weighs about 13-15 pounds. After further testing, they discovered that Maddie had a heart murmur. Her pediatrician recommended that the family schedule an appointment with cardiology at CHRISTUS Children’s.

Holly and Keith met with Dr. Ali Mumtaz and Dr. Daniel Nento of the cardiothoracic surgery team at CHRISTUS Children’s with hopes of finding out what was causing their daughter’s heart murmur.

“It was terrifying because we weren’t sure what to expect, but as soon as we met with Dr. Nento and Dr. Mumtaz, we felt confident that our baby’s heart was in good hands,” Holly said. “Each member of the cardiology team made us feel comforted and well-informed.”

Maddie was diagnosed with a large ventricular septal defect (VSD), a small aortic valve, and a small hypoplastic aortic arch, all serious congenital heart defects. Maddie’s VSD and small hypoplastic aortic arch required immediate surgical repair.

Dr. Mumtaz, chief of cardiothoracic surgery at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio, and his team completed the surgical repairs, with no complications.

“After the surgery, Dr. Mumtaz came in to let our family know that everything went smoothly,” Holly added. “He was attentive to every question, encouraging, and positive. We could not have asked for a better team to have taken care of our baby girl.”

Maddie’s recovery process was smooth, and she quickly began eating normally and gaining weight.

Maddie still has a small aortic valve which requires close attention to assure that the valve is growing with her. She sees Dr. Justin Weigand, cardiologist at CHRISTUS Children’s, once every three months for a heart check-up.

Maddie is now a happy one-year-old who loves to laugh. She is very active and is learning to talk and crawl.

“We will always be grateful to each nurse, physician, and hospital staff member we encountered at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio,” Holly said. “They saved our baby’s life and gave her a bright future.”

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Our specialists are committed to serving and providing the best possible care – body, mind, and spirit - for our children and their families. We believe CHRISTUS Children’s is the best place for every child in need of medical care and we prove that every day, through every nurse, every child life specialist, every staff member. One of the best ways to highlight this care is to share incredible stories from our patients and their family members. It’s a way you can help us continue to bring hope and healing to inspire others. If you’re a current or former patient, a loved one, a caregiver, or friend, we would love to hear about your healing journey at CHRISTUS Children’s.

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