Ever heard of a child born without a brain? And more miraculously, the child defying all odds living for 12 long years?
In perhaps one of the most amazing examples of human survival, Trevor Judge Waltrip, a boy born without a brain, died on 25 August (Monday) after living for 12 years. The miracle child was born in Louisiana on Christmas Eve in 2001.
As a result of a rare condition called hydranencephaly, Trevor’s skull only contained sacs filled with cerebrospinal fluid. Trevor was born with a brain stem, which allowed him to breathe, respond to some stimulus, and of course maintain a heartbeat
Hydranencephaly is a condition in which the brain’s cerebral hemispheres are non-existent and is replaced by sacs filled with cerebrospinal fluid. Hydranencephaly varies in degrees, with Trevor’s complete absence of a brain being on the more extreme end of the illness.
The outlook for children born with this uncommon disease is generally poor; with many dying before age one. With only the help of a feeding tube and therapists to stimulate his muscles and joints, Trevor did just that and beat all odds, surviving for 12 years when doctors only gave him 12 weeks.
The child’s physician Larry Daniels considered Trevor unique after living for 17 months stating many babies with this condition do not even make it to birth.
Based on the many encouraging comments left on Trevor’s Facebook obituary, it’s obvious that his mere survival helped to instill feelings of hope for parents everywhere taking care of severely disabled children.