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Hayden's Story

Hayden's care team and family

“He’s our miracle baby.”

Hayden Hoskins’ short life has already been filled with milestones. As he approaches his first birthday, his parents, Kelsea and Andy, are grateful for their miracle and those who helped ensure he is here today.

It was an exciting day for the Hoskins back on Sept. 17, 2012, when Kelsea was having an ultrasound in her 20th week. They heard the wonderful news that they were expecting a boy, but they also found out that Hayden had an omphalocele, and their excitement turned to uncertainty about what this meant for their baby.

An omphalocele, which occurs in approximately one in 5,000 births, is a birth defect in which part of an infant’s internal organs grow externally in a sac through the belly button.

Genetic Testing for Omphalocele

After conferring with several specialists, the Quincy, Ill., family traveled to St. Louis, where Kelsea and Hayden became patients of The Fetal Care Center at St. Louis Children’s Hospital and Barnes-Jewish Hospital. During this time, they received genetic testing, and they were grateful to learn that Hayden didn’t have any chromosomal defects or heart defects related to his omphalocele.

“Every three weeks, we were making trips to St. Louis, and then every other week and finally every week,” Kelsea recalls. “We had done a lot of research and knew a lot about omphalocele. We also knew that God was going to give us whatever he’s going to give us and it would be OK.”

Expert Delivery at St. Louis Children’s

The Fetal Care Center set a goal of 39 weeks with Kelsea for her due date, but by week 37, they knew it was time for her to deliver with maternal fetal medicine specialist Alison Cahill, MD.

On January 18, 2013, Hayden Hoskins entered the world at Barnes-Jewish Hospital.

“The delivery room was filled with doctors and nurses, and the transport team was standing by to take Hayden to the NICU at St. Louis Children’s Hospital,” Kelsea says. “He cried right away, and I got to touch him and hold his hand before they took him. I had him in the afternoon, and I got to see him in the NICU by midnight.”

Hayden remained in the newborn intensive care unit for 30 days, while Kelsea and Andy, both teachers, stayed by his side.

Due to the size of Hayden’s omphalocele, his pediatric surgeon, Brad Warner, MD, was not yet ready to put Hayden’s organs back into his abdomen.

“We took Hayden home on February 17 and had great support from our family, church and friends,” Kelsea says. “The original thought was that it would be a year before the surgery to put his organs back, but we were back at St. Louis Children’s Hospital for the surgery on June 24 with Dr. Warner.”

Corrective Surgery for Omphalocele

During the five months between Hayden’s birth and his surgery, Hayden did have challenges with severe vomiting, or reflux, dehydration and a hernia surgery at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.

“It was very stressful after his surgery at first, and we were kind of melting down when he had respiratory failure,” Kelsea says. “We thought we were going to lose him, and it was really scary, but by day 10 things turned around and he came home two weeks after his surgery.”

Hayden will continue to be observed for hernias and is already reaching many milestones for his age.

 “He’s our miracle baby, and he’s doing awesome,” Kelsea says. “We are so excited now when we go to St. Louis Children’s Hospital and see the doctors and nurses who were there for us. They are a part of our family now.”      

Contact Us

For more information, contact The Fetal Care Center at 866.867.3627.

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