New mom recalls ‘nightmare’ of daughter going into cardiac arrest after six months – and how little girl fought for life through three surgeries
- A mother from Geelong has revived her baby with CPR
- The child suffered cardiac arrest last year
- The baby has since undergone three surgeries
A mother recalls the horrifying moment when she revived her infant daughter while the child went into cardiac arrest. She said the ordeal was her “worst nightmare.”
Kimberley Bell and her husband Michael from Curlewis in Geelong, Victoria had their baby Willow last May after IVF treatment.
But about six months later, the boy went into cardiac arrest, which led to her undergoing a marathon 12-hour surgery with three procedures.
The little girl had been diagnosed with a heart defect before she was born six weeks prematurely at Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital.
“I was so scared I was going to lose her… it took us four years to conceive… we’ve wanted this for so long,” Ms Bell told the Geelong Advertiser.
Kimberley Bell and her husband Michael from Curlewis in Geelong, Victoria had their baby Willow last May after IVF treatment (pictured, the family together)
But about six months later, Willow (pictured) went into cardiac arrest, which led to her undergoing a marathon 12-hour surgery with three procedures
She went home with her parents after six weeks in the hospital and was scheduled to undergo a cone repair in January this year to improve her heart function.
The young one was diagnosed with a heart defect in utero before being born six weeks prematurely at Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital
Her circulation was affected by her illness, turning her skin a purple color as the family waited for the day of surgery.
Ms Bell described what happened next as the most stressful moment of her life – when she and her husband Willow tried to calm down one morning.
Willow began screaming in an “alarming high pitch” before her eyes rolled back and her arms went limp on December 7 last year.
“I put a stethoscope on her chest and at that point there was no heartbeat,” said Ms. Bell, a clinical nursing specialist.
“Then I realized she wasn’t breathing and I started CPR.”
The desperate mother said her daughter grunted and started breathing again with each compression.
The family took Willow straight to Geelong Hospital before she was taken to Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital, where she remained for the following month.
The family (pictured) took Willow straight to Geelong Hospital before she was taken to Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital, where she stayed for the next month
Since then, Willow (pictured) has made a good recovery where she no longer turns purple and is keeping pace with other babies her age
The baby was put on a machine that helped her heart and lungs stay on track and underwent marathon 12-hour heart surgery, which included three heart procedures.
Since then, Willow has made a good recovery where she no longer turns purple and is keeping up with other babies her age.
Ms Bell said her daughter was the happiest baby and was doing well now, but she may have more surgeries in the future.
The pair will compete in one Run for the kids event to raise money for the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal this month.
The new mom praises the hospital for saving Willow’s life and stressed the importance of knowing basic first aid.