“You know if we bring him home I can’t guarantee he will live another day with this heart defect,” Ayers said.
Jason and his wife adopted Patrick from China back in 2013. They brought him back home to Alabama knowing he needed extensive heart surgery.
Related: Children’s Hospital Uses 3D Printer
“Patrick had a complex heart defect. He had one ventricle instead of two and did not have development of his pulmonary artery and valve,” Ayers said.
The family flew Patrick up to Boston Children’s Hospital for surgery and to take part in a new study using 3-D printer technology. The 3-D heart printing gives surgeons the upper hand to practice their procedure before the operation.
“I can plan out the intricate details or pathways in a way we’ve never been able to do before,” Boston Children’s Hospital heart surgeon Dr. Emani said.
It also provides parents and patients a clear understanding of what the surgery entails. “It showed me Dr. Emani and his team knew what was going to happen going in and they could prepare themselves better than anyone else,” Ayers said.
Patrick’s surgery was 13 hours. Today he’s much better.
“It’s just amazing to hold him and know he has a much healthier heart he did prior,” Ayers said.