Luke’s mom, Rebecca, knew five months into her pregnancy with him that he had a severe cardiac defect. She had a fetal echocardiogram, which is a detailed image of the baby’s heart before birth using ultrasound and Doppler X-ray machines. Doctors at Children’s explained to Rebecca that her baby had tetralogy of Fallot (TOF), which causes problems in how arteries and vessels carried oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the rest of the body. Tests and surgery would need to be performed when he was born.
Four months later, she gave birth to an adorable little boy. Thanks to the educational materials Children’s gave her and the time she spent researching on the Internet before Luke was born, she knew just what to expect in the coming months. Exams, imaging and surgery would be done at Children’s to help repair his heart.
She was already acquainted with the doctors at Children’s from consultations by the time Luke was ready for his surgery. A critical step in TOF repair is determining when a child is physically ready for the surgery. In order to determine the best time for the procedures, Luke had high-quality 3-D images taken of his heart using a cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (cardiac MRI) scanner at Children’s. The surgeries were a success.
Today, a healthy, happy Luke continues to visit Children’s for follow-up cardiac MRI scans to make sure his heart is functioning properly—thankfully, it is. And his jovial smile is functioning perfectly too.