Aric Tersinar

Answers for Aric

Amelia Tersinar was 28 weeks pregnant when her water broke.

Tersinar, from Pittsburg, Kan., was transferred two hours from home to Overland Park Regional Medical Center.

“Aric came 12 weeks early and was born just over two pounds. He had complications with his lungs, which is normal for premature babies,” Tersinar said.

Soon after, doctors discovered that Aric had a rare heart condition, which affects less than one out of every 10,000 babies. In fact, it is so rare that it makes up only one percent of all congenital heart defects.

Soon after, doctors discovered that Aric had a rare heart condition, which affects less than one out of every 10,000 babies. In fact, it is so rare that it makes up only one percent of all congenital heart defects.

“Children born with truncus arteriosis have a large hole between the two lower pumping chambers of the heart and one large artery arising from the two pumping chambers of the heart, instead of the normal situation where there is one artery from the right lower pumping chamber to the lungs and another from the left lower pumping chamber to the body,” says Dr. Steven Weindling, pediatric cardiologist with Overland Park Regional Medical Center. “With only one artery from the two lower pumping chambers of the heart, oxygen-rich and oxygen-poor blood mix so that the blood to the body is not fully oxygenated, and there tends to be too much blood going to the lungs.”

10 days later, after extensive conversations with Dr. Weindling, the Tersinar’s were transferred to Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford.

“Aric needed open-heart surgery to treat his heart condition, which would be particularly challenging because of his extreme prematurity and the rareness of his heart disease. Aric to the Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford because their surgeon has particular expertise in both treating truncus arteriosus and premature infants,” Weindling says.

Two months later, the family was back at Overland Park Regional Medical Center.

“Once Aric had recovered from surgery, we were able to come back to the NICU here and continue to receive the specialized care that he needed,” Tersinar says.

Aric will still likely need at least two more procedures to treat his heart condition, to accommodate his growth.

“We have been so blessed with the care we have received,” Tersinar says. “To deliver a premature baby and then find out he has a heart condition was a lot to deal with but the nurses and doctors have been by our side every step of the way.”

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