Aoife Molly (pronounced Eee-fa) was born on 2/26/06. At nine days old she was diagnosed with a rare and complex congenital heart defect called truncus arteriosus. At age 15 days old, Aoife had her first open heart surgery which consisted of separating the aorta and the pulmonary artery, closing the ventricular septal defect and putting in a conduit to connect the pulmonary artery. Since her conduit won't grow with her, Aoife has had two cardiac catheterizations and she had a second open heart surgery on August 5, 2011 to replace her conduit. She also had a cardiac catheterization and electrical study in 2016 which ruled out suspected arrhythmias. She will have more caths and open heart surgeries to replace the conduit as she grows, but she is currently doing great and her third open heart surgery is not yet on the horizon..
In Oct. 2008 we were stunned to learn that our baby girl due in 2/2009 also has truncus arteriosus. It is more likely to be struck by lightning twice than to have two cases of truncus in the same family.
Tarynn was born at Brigham and Womens hospital in Boston on Feb 5, 2009. She had her first open heart surgery on February 9 and recovered very well. Tarynn had cardiac catheterizations in August 2009 and May of 2010, and she had her second open heart surgery on September 24, 2010 at the age of 20 months. During this surgery, the doctors enlarged one of her branch pulmonary arteries and her conduit, and inserted a 19mm bovine valve that works as Tarynn's pulmonary valve. Tarynn is all recovered from this surgery and is a lively and energetic girl. In 2016, she had another cardiac catheterization, and in 2019 she had a cardiac MRI. Tarynn is also doing well and her doctors do not feel that she will need her next open heart surgery for another few years.
Aemilia is Aoife and Tarynn's older sister and she has a healthy heart.
Thanks to all of our family members and friends who are supporting us with prayers, positive thoughts, and kind words as we cope with our daughters' heart defects.
- Heidi, Brian, Aemilia, Aoife & Tarynn Blais
To access our archive of blog posts from 2008-2016, please click on the link below:
For an excellent description of truncus arteriosus, click here: