ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Baby Michael first seemed to be perfectly healthy, a little bundle of joy for his mother and father when he was born last December.
At 14 weeks old, however, Michael suffered from heart failure.
“Words cannot begin to describe the pain we felt in that moment,” wrote his mother, Emma Labuschagne, on GoFundMe. “We watched our baby breathless, gasping for air while his heart stopped and paramedics worked to save his life.
“In that moment I did not think Michael would make it through.”
He survived cardiac arrest and upon waking up from a five-day coma, Labuschagne said Michael smiled at his daddy.
Labuschagne and her family, based in Bristol, England, say they are raising money to help pay for a special type of surgery to treat cardiac fibroma. According to Boston Children’s Hospital, it’s a sort of rare tumor that develops in the heart.
The children’s hospital knows a thing or two about treating the condition, it says, especially with a team of cardiologists and surgeons who especially treat children in its Cardiac Tumor Program. Labuschagne writes she hopes to raise enough money to get Michael the treatment he needes in the U.S. — in Boston.
She posted a video on Facebook that since has gone viral to share Michael’s story.
10News has reached out to the family to learn more.
“Boston Children’s Hospital, ranked #1 paediatric hospital in the world, has quoted us $147,000 which converts to approximately £116,000 for the procedure,” Labuschagne wrote. “The cardiac surgeons at Boston are *Fact* the best cardiac surgeons in the world and they have done this operation several times.
“They are confident that they can drastically improve, or even cure, his condition by resecting the tumour.”
As of Saturday morning, the GoFundMe page has raised at least £51,000.