• Audrina Cardenas discharged after 3 1/2 month stay in Texas Children's Hospital

    Baby was born with her heart outside her chest

    Baby with Heart Outside Body Goes Home - News photo

    HOUSTON – (January 23, 2013) – Today at Texas Children's Hospital, Audrina Cardenas was discharged after a 3 1/2 month stay in the hospital. Audrina was born with her heart outside her chest, a very rare diagnosis known as ectopia cordis.

    Dr. Charles D. Fraser, Jr. (heart surgeon, surgeon-in-chief, pictured), Dr. Larry Hollier (plastic surgeon) and Dr. David Wesson (general surgeon) performed a life-saving surgery on her second day of life to repair her heart. Eight out of 1 million babies are diagnosed with this rare condition each year and 90% of those children will not survive. But Audrina has defied the odds and is doing very well.

    Audrina left the hospital with an external heart shield that she will wear moving forward to protect her heart as she grows. In a few years, Audrina will have surgery to place a more permanent protective shield inside her chest wall. She will be followed regularly by Dr. Carrie Altman and the cardiology team at Texas Children's Hospital.

    Read more about Audrina's story and the surgery that saved her life. 

    Ectopia Cordis video 
    Watch a video of Audrina's heart outside her chest (ectopia cordis).

     Ectopia Cordis at Texas Children's Hospital - Interview with surgeons
    Watch a video interview with the surgeons who saved Audrina's life.


    About Texas Children's Hospital
    Texas Children’s Hospital, a not-for-profit organization, is committed to creating a community of healthy children through excellence in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked among the top children’s hospitals in the nation, Texas Children’s has recognized Centers of Excellence in multiple pediatric subspecialties including the Cancer and Heart Centers, and operates the largest primary pediatric care network in the country. Texas Children's has completed a $1.5 billion expansion, which includes the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; and Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston.  For more information on Texas Children's, go to www.texaschildrens.org. Get the latest news from Texas Children’s by visiting the online newsroom and on Twitter at twitter.com/texaschildrens.

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