A Colombian baby born with several of her vital organs outside of her body will be operated on in Florida.
The 10 month old Maria Jose Chavez will undergo surgery in Miami, Florida in hopes of correcting her rare condition known as cloacal exstrophy. The disease often results in infection and requires multiple operations.
News channel NBC Miami quoted Dr. Rafael Gosalbez, a pediatric urologist at Holtz Children’s Hospital explaining Maria’s serious situation, “We have the pelvic organs that are normally the bladder, the uterus, and the colon, that are split open.” Allegedly, some of her organs are also duplicated, “It’s like two half-babies in the same baby – you have half of the genitals on one side, half of the genitals on the other,” the doctor said.
“Every day since she was born, I get up at 2 am to begin the process of cleaning and disinfecting the exposed organs, a process that must be repeated four times a day,” said Maria Fernanda Chaves, Jose Maria’s mother, in a report by news channel Telemundo.
The first operation will require both a pediatric urologist and orthopedic surgeon, and will take 12 to 15 hours. Several operations will be needed after the first to completely restore Maria’s organs. According to NBC Miami, despite the complexity of the surgeries, doctors are confident that the procedures will be successful.
The International Kids Fund Wonderfund is trying to raise the thousands of dollars required to cover the cost of the extensive treatment and operations.
The Chavez family cannot receive U.S. public funding since they are not U.S. citizens and the surgery demands expertise and technology not easily available in Colombia, reported Telemundo.