STAYING STRONG: Sarah Crouch and Damian Carey, of East Lismore, with their son Beau, four months, who suffers a heart condition.
STAYING STRONG: Sarah Crouch and Damian Carey, of East Lismore, with their son Beau, four months, who suffers a heart condition. Jacklyn Wagner

Surgery for little battler

THE Northern Star recently reported the story of baby Beau, a four-month-old Lismore boy born with a combination of life-threatening diseases, one of eight born worldwide in the past 10 years with his condition.

Beau is living with a serious respiratory problem and multiple problems with his heart.

Beau underwent a delicate heart surgery in Brisbane on Friday morning in an attempt to fix some of these issues, beginning a harrowing day for parents Sarah Crouch and Damian Carey.

Ms Crouch said the doctors and surgeons warned them the most likely outcome was Beau not surviving the operation.

However, after eight-and-a-half hours in surgery, the couple was told Beau had pushed through, much to their relief, and was in the intensive care unit awaiting their visit.

"They basically told us he wouldn't make it off the operating table and we've proved them wrong because he's proved us wrong," Ms Crouch said.

However, there were still some concerns. Beau's left lung was presenting problems post-surgery, said Ms Crouch.

"It's kind of deflated, as they tell us, so they've got him on a full mask to try to inflate the lung."

She said if the doctors couldn't get this lung inflated soon, they might have to go ahead and do the respiratory surgery - a risky procedure where they cut the lung in an attempt to make it bigger - which the couple would prefer not to do unless absolutely necessarily, as they didn't believe Beau was strong enough yet.

She said they had no idea when Beau might be able to come home, but the doctors were hoping he would be out of the intensive care unit and back to the ward by the end of the week.

It hasn't been an easy few days for Mr Carey and Ms Crouch, who've been staying close to the hospital in Brisbane and spending whatever time they can with their son.

"It's been very, very hard. Very nerve racking," Ms Crouch said.

"But we're pulling through it. We're staying strong, we're staying positive."

Visit the Baby Beau Heart Appeal Facebook page for updates..

Baby Beau

  • Beau has a VSD - an extra large hole in his heart - as well as an extra artery from his brain to his heart and enclosed vessels inside his heart.
  • He also has respiratory problems where his trachea is almost closed up and his airways are 'floppy'.


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