A 9-month-old British boy had 25 heart attacks in a single day and survived to tell the tale.
Well, not really tell the tale--he still can’t speak yet. But he lived.
Theo Fry is a remarkable boy. Since being born, Theo has survived blood poisoning, an interrupted aortic arch (where basically the aorta isn’t fully developed), and no less than 30 heart attacks. And he survived all of it to become a healthy baby boy as of today.
It all started at just 8 days old. Theo immediately took a turn a week after being born, becoming sleepy (well, sleepier than an 8-day-old normally is) and turned an alarming shade of blue. He was quickly rushed to hospital where doctors couldn’t figure out what was wrong. They eventually determined that Theo’s heart was failing and then rushed him to Alder Hey Hospital for emergency surgery.
"Everyone expected him to die,” mother Mother Fauve told The Mirror.
That was when doctors diagnosed Theo with the interrupted aortic arch. During the operation was when Theo suffered his first heart attack, but he survived, stabilized, and stayed at Alder Hey for 3 months. During that time, he suffered another heart attack and contracted sepsis, battling back from the brink each time.
In July 2017, Theo was sent home but things didn’t get much better. He was suffering from arrhythmias where Theo’s heart would race dangerously fast for no reason at all. Finally, Theo’s parents returned him for observation at Alder Hey. He was just supposed to stay one night so that doctors could record his condition.
Instead, Theo stayed at Alder Hey for 6 months.
On December 21st, Theo had a massive heart attack. His heart actually stopped beating for a full 12 minutes and he only survived due to the constant ministrations of doctors and machinery operating his lungs for him. He had two more heart attacks over the Christmas break, and then came the big day on January 31st, 2018.
Twenty-five heart attacks in a 24-hour period. It’s a new record.
Amazingly, Theo survived. The following day after his bajillions of heart attacks, doctors performed emergency open heart surgery and discovered the problem: scar tissue was blocking the left ventricle. Once it was removed, Theo perked up and was well enough to go home in just two days.
Today, Theo is a healthy, happy boy. Theos parents now advocate for Healing Little Hearts, a UK charity that flies doctors all around the world to perform heart surgeries on children where advanced medical care isn’t available.