Azaria came into the world on Halloween in 2010. Maurice and Mayna, Azaria’s biological aunt and uncle, have cared for her since her birth, providing a loving home and seeing to the little girl’s every need. Her name means “helped by God.”
“She has been a blessing to our home and we can’t imagine life without her,” Mayna says.
But, Azaria’s early years have not been without complications.
Just weeks after her birth, she was diagnosed with bronchopulmonary dysplasia, a serious lung condition. A few weeks later, at two months of age, Azaria was diagnosed with an extremely rare 5q11 chromosomal translocation and familial adenomatous polyposis, a hereditary disease associated with the development of colon cancer. At age 1, doctors diagnosed her with chronic lung disease and at age 2, a seizure disorder.
This combination of diagnoses caused severe developmental delays and left Azaria unable to interact with her parents.
While life hasn’t always been easy, her parents are pleased to report Azaria is making remarkable progress with the help of her Beaumont Children’s Hospital doctors.
Pediatric neurologist Rashmi Gupta, M.D., and Azaria’s pediatrician work closely with Maurice and Mayna in treating Azaria for her seizure disorder and for a related diagnosis of cerebral palsy, as well as for pneumonia connected to her chronic lung disease.
“The staff has always treated my daughter like a princess,” Mayna says. “They are very compassionate and caring to her needs.”
Azaria’s treatments are ongoing. She remains oxygen dependent and has a feeding tube, but thanks to her family’s unrelenting strength and her own resilience, this little girl is making wonderful progress.
She has come a long way from being entirely unable to interact with others. She is beginning to show signs of communication – “babbling” as Mayna puts it – and is able to recognize her parents and her younger siblings. She’s even sitting up on her own. These are all excellent signs that Azaria, now 3 years old, is moving in the right direction.
“We know the journey will be long, but we look forward to it and to watching her grow,” Mayna says.
Beaumont Children’s Hospital is proud to be the only Southeast Michigan affiliate of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, a national non-profit alliance of premier hospitals for children. With funding from CMN, Beaumont Children’s Hospital doctors and other professionals provide the most advance care to tens of thousands of local children every year. For more patient stories, news and health information connect on Facebook.