Stephen's Story: Parent's Letter Project Tracheal Esophageal Fistula (TEF)- Stephen's mom

We had no prior knowledge of Stephen's birth defect in 1993. Fortunately, we had a great neonatalogist during delivery who thought something was a little off. Twelve hours later, Stephen was in the operating room under the care of Kurt Newman, MD. It was not a simple repair, nor an easy surgery. We almost lost Stephen a few times during the next 18 days. Through the years, we have been in and out of various departments of Children's National and every single experience has been nothing less than outstanding in expertise, treatment protocol, and compassion.

We are grateful for having the world's best resource in our back yard. I still send Dr. Newman our annual Christmas cards with an update on Stephen's life. Stephen is now heading off to Old Dominion University to become a certified art therapist. He hopes to help other children who are sick and need to find a way to express their fear and anxiety.

Just take it one day at a time; connect with other parents of TEF children. And let others help you! You don't have to be alone in this process.

Sincerely,

Stephen's mom, Sharon

Treatment Team

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