The Brahniuk family has faced more challenges then most people will ever face in their entire life. Their daughter Aria is 2 years old and has gone through many surgery’s and procedures including two feeding tube surgery’s, two brain surgery’s and one more brain surgery on the way in the next couple weeks.
Before Aria was born she had a hemorrhage in the ventricles in her brain which caused several issues including, a vision impairment, muscle tone issues, feeding issues that requires a feeding tube, seizures and global delay. She has two types of Cerebral Palsy as a result of the brain trauma that covers her issues under an umbrella that is overall undiagnosed. She has low and high muscle tone which means her muscles are too weak to support herself and she is stiff as a result. Due to these issues she cannot hold herself up and is unable to walk or talk and we expect these will be challenges she will face for her entire life.
One of Aria’s first surgery’s was to place a G tube in her stomach because she could not keep any food down and was unable to gain weight. Due to complications with the G tube that caused her to lose additional weight and be under the 1 percentile for her age it need to be removed and replaced with a G J tube. Her food now bypasses her stomach and goes directly into her jejunum in her intestines and she has started gaining weight and growing again.
Her hips are closely monitored because of her Cerebral Palsy they are very poorly aligned and will require small intervention or potentially major surgery in the future.
From the original brain bleed Aria developed Hydrocephalus which is a condition where excess cerebral spinal fluid builds up in the ventricles causing pressure on the brain. This can make issues like tone and brain development not progress properly. It can also cause issues like headaches and position issues as the fluid is putting pressure on her eyes and brain.
Most recently, on March 16th Aria had surgery to place her first shunt, but just 12 days later developed an infection that needed them to return to BC Children’s hospital for the shunt to be removed and the infection be treated. She is going to be in hospital for at least 3 weeks while they wait for the infection to clear and decide on next steps to have the shunt replaced.
Scott and Samantha are dedicated parents who are giving everything they have to support Aria’s health and wellness throughout all of her medical concerns. They have approached it all with enormous love, support and bravery and it has been equally difficult to manage financially with the additional costs that add up with a child in the hospital and away from home.
As Aria’s conditions will require her to spend time in and out of hospitals, here in Nanaimo and at Vancouver Children’s, throughout her life for general care and when complications arise we ask for your support and greatly appreciate and are thankful for any contribution that you can make.
- Tara Kruger
- Erin Martyn
- Melissa Reid
- Andrew Speirs
Organizer and beneficiary
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