HULL, East Yorkshire — A mother in the UK is thankful for her son after she declined to abort him upon learning that he had a rare lung condition.
“I was given the option to terminate the pregnancy as it was unlikely the baby would survive, but there was no doubt in my mind that I would carry on,” Yvonne Excell recalled to the Hull Daily Mail.
Excell was 20 weeks pregnant when she learned that the child inside of her had a condition called congenital cystic adenomatoid malformation (CCAM), which is defined as “a benign mass of abnormal lung tissue that replaces part of one lobe of a fetal lung.” According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the condition affects 1 in 25,000 to 35,000.
“It’s abnormal tissue in the lungs, which squashed his lung and heart right to the side near enough to his back,” she explained.
Excell knew that she could not end her child’s life, so she pressed onward, enduring the steroid treatments that followed. She also sought to find support from others who were familiar with the condition.
“There was no support as no one knew what it was,” Excell recalled. “My GP and midwife had no idea, and my consultant had only seen five CCAM pregnancies since 2005. I went down to a Harley Street Clinic a couple of times and met one lady there, but that was it.”
Finally, she found an online support group comprised of other parents who have children who were diagnosed with CCAM.
On March 30, Excell was induced at Hull Royal Infirmary, and despite a brief scare three hours after birth, baby Ruben has been doing well. He has checkups every six months.
“On one of his first check-ups they thought he had a collapsed lung, but it wasn’t,” Excell told the Hull Daily Mail. “He will keep having checkups until he is well enough for surgery, where he will have the bottom lobe of his lung taken off. It will repair itself after that.”
“He will be monitored as there’s no way we can tell how it may affect him in later life,” she stated.
Excell says that she is glad to now be spending time with her happy baby boy. She has two other sons ages nine and five.
Psalm 127:3 reads, “Lo, children are a heritage of the Lord, and the fruit of the womb is His reward.”