A 35-week old pregnant woman was injured in a shootout that severely injured her unborn child in her womb. The bullet hit the child in the mother’s womb severely injuring the baby’s lungs, tore off part of his ear and caused spinal cord injury. The little one survived the gruesome injuries and doctors have deemed his survival a miracle.
Claudineia dos Santos Melo was hit by a stray bullet from a shootout in a Rio slum on June 30. The bullet pierced her body during a gun fight between drug traffickers and police in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, which left two other civilians dead. While the 29-year-old mother was in stable, non-life threatening condition her baby who has been now named Arthur was in critical condition. The doctors performed an emergency caesarian delivery and immediately also performed two life-saving operations on the baby.
Rio health secretary Dr José Carlos Oliveira, a gynaecologist, said, “It’s a miracle of God this baby hasn’t died. His condition is very serious and he remains sedated with a bilateral chest drain.”
According to a report by the Daily Mail, an x-ray showed a lesion in the baby’s vertebra, near the thorax. “We’re waiting for his health to stabilise and improve before doing any more surgery,” the health secretary added.
The mother was left with a fractured iliac wing but ‘no apparent bleeding’. Her condition is reported as stable and she has not required surgery, the report added.
Rafael Lopes, the head surgeon at the Moacyr Rodrigues de Carmo hospital where ‘miracle baby’ Arthur was delivered, said, “We had never seen this before.” José Carlos Oliveira, a gynaecologist, said Arthur’s survival was “a miracle happening before our eyes”. “Today, he is paraplegic, but anything can happen in the life of this child,” he told the Telegraph.
While the family hopes that the baby’s condition improves fast and the baby’s father, described his son as “victorious”.