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How One Mother’s Brave Choice Changed Her Life – And Countless Others Forever

'They’d already made up their mind. That it was best for us to not continue the pregnancy.'

As any mum will know, there’s nothing quite like seeing your baby on the screen for the first time. It’s meant to be one of the happiest moments in your life. And as Sam Stasinowsky laid there for her 22-week scan, the only news she had been expecting was whether she was carrying a boy or a girl.

However Ms Stasinowsky’s world came crashing down when the sonographer went silent, and before long she was being told her baby had a major heart defect.

“We knew she wasn’t ok,” Ms Stasinowsky told Seven News. “They’d already made up their mind. That it was best for us to not continue the pregnancy.” 

Instead of listening to their advice, she went through with the pregnancy and delivered a baby girl whom she named Sophie.

Immediately following her birth, Sophie was rushed into life-saving surgery to have her major arteries reversed.

“I remember the doctor saying, ‘She’s doing really well, you can have a quick cuddle before they take her’”, the mum recalled through tears.

Now two, Sophie is a happy toddler and doctors are hoping to replicate her positive story.

“Australian researchers have unlocked vital clues revealing exactly how and when heart chambers form in unborn babies,” reports Seven News.

Congenital heart disease is the most common type of birth defect, and it’s hoped this new breakthrough will lead to new treatments and further understanding for both doctors and mothers.

Professor Richard Harvey from the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute’s said tiny heart chambers could form as early as three weeks. 

“That’s probably earlier than most women know they’re pregnant,” said Professor Harvey said. So it’s absolutely critical we understand how important those early phases of pregnancy are.”

“This might take the form of drug therapies, of stem cell therapies, of other types of treatments that would help that baby get through those early phases.”

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