Baby airlifted to Jo’burg

2010-07-02 00:00

A THREE-DAY-OLD baby girl was rushed from Medi-Clinic to Johannesburg yesterday morning after a serious heart condition presen­ted itself.

Unathi Msimang weighed 2,6 kilogrammes when she was born with heart complications on June 29.

Mother Nelisiwe Msimang (28) from Edendale left Pietermaritzburg yesterday and travelled by car to be with her daughter.

Speaking to The Witness, she said she has few details of her daughter’s condition.

“I’m not exactly sure of what is going on at the moment. From what I understand, her veins are overriding each other,” she said.

Msimang said she will receive more information from Unathi’s doctors after she is put through a series of scans and tests.

Unathi is Msimang’s third child.

The shaken mother said she is doing “okay” under the circumstances.

“I’m doing alright, I’m just feeling a bit depressed,” she said.

ER24’s Derrick Banks confirmed Unathi was taken by air to Sunninghill Hospital.

“The baby presented with a heart defect, and was taken to Johannesburg,” he said.

Pietermaritzburg paediatrician Dr Doshen Naidoo said he has dealt with six cases of newborns with heart problems since January this year.

He said only one in 10 000 babies have congenital heart defects.

“This is not a region-specific problem. It has nothing to do with geography or the gender of the baby,” he said.

“I don’t think there is an increase of babies with congenital heart defects in Pietermaritzburg. In fact, I think there is the same risk anywhere in the world.”

Heather Geddes, mother of Tayla Grace Geddes — a three-month-old infant awaiting open- heart surgery at the same hospital in Johannesburg — apparently consoled Msimang at Medi-Clinic yesterday.

Tayla’s grandmother confirmed that the baby girl has picked up weight and tipped the scales at 3,3 kilograms yesterday.

She still needs to gain 200 grams to become eligible for the surgery to fix the holes in her heart and reconstruct her missing septum.

Specialist doctors were apparently working a plan of action for Unathi’s treatment yesterday.

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