Colom­bian with COVID-19 gives birth in coma

Iran Daily - - Infotainme­nt -

Diana An­gola was fight­ing for her own life when she gave birth to son Jef­fer­son. The 36-year-old had been put into a coma hav­ing con­tracted the novel coro­n­avirus, which left her lungs barely able to cope.

Doc­tors per­formed a Cae­sar­ian sec­tion due to the state of her lungs and Jef­fer­son was born at least 14 weeks pre­ma­turely, ac­cord­ing to AFP.

The case gen­er­ated ‘a lot of shock’, Paula Ve­lasquez, a doc­tor spe­cial­iz­ing in in­ter­nal medicine at the Ver­salles clinic in the south­east­ern city of Cali, told AFP.

“We knew that there were few re­ported cases of sur­vival in a con­text as se­vere as our pa­tient,” said Ve­lasquez.

An­gola, who also has a daugh­ter, was taken to hos­pi­tal on May 15 with a ter­ri­ble fever.

Three days later she was put into an in­duced coma and kept that way un­til surgery.

Be­cause of her preg­nancy, she was kept sit­ting up at a 45 de­gree an­gle, when those suf­fer­ing from pneu­mo­nia are nor­mally laid down flat to help their breath­ing.

Jef­fer­son, though pre­ma­ture, was born with­out the coro­n­avirus — but doc­tors said he strug­gled to breathe, and that they had to re­vive him.

“We had to go through the whole pro­ce­dure of a crit­i­cal pa­tient,” pe­di­a­tri­cian Ed­win Olivo, who was one of the spe­cial­ists in­volved in the birth, said.

But, he added, though the baby re­mains in an in­cu­ba­tor he quickly started putting on weight and breath­ing more eas­ily.

“A hu­man be­ing can sur­vive from 24 weeks with a good weight, but with a lot of tech­nol­ogy and an ef­fect on neu­ro­log­i­cal de­vel­op­ment and the lungs,” said Ve­lasquez.

Now re­cov­ered from the virus, An­gola is des­per­ate to be dis­charged with her son.

“It’s re­ally emo­tional know­ing that we fought, that the doc­tors helped us sur­vive,” she said, her voice faint.

She says she doesn’t know how she con­tracted the virus and her fam­ily in­sists she com­plied rigidly with the lock­down, first im­posed on

March 25 but which has been eas­ing re­cently.

In the hos­pi­tal cor­ri­dors, her sis­ter An­gela breathes a sigh of re­lief.

With Latin Amer­ica now the epi­cen­ter of the coro­n­avirus pan­demic, An­gela wants her sis­ter and nephew’s case to act as a les­son for oth­ers.

“There are many peo­ple who go around with­out face masks, who go to par­ties, be­cause they don’t know any­one (with the virus) they don’t re­al­ize” how dan­ger­ous it is.

With more than 2,600 deaths and 80,000 cases, Colom­bia is the sixth most af­fected coun­try in Latin Amer­ica in terms of fa­tal­i­ties and fifth worst for in­fec­tions.

How­ever, the virus is spread­ing quickly in the coun­try of 50 mil­lion, with a quar­ter of those deaths and cases re­ported just last week.


LUIS ROBAYO/AFP Diana An­gola’s child Jef­fer­son was born at least 14 weeks pre­ma­turely but his con­di­tion has been im­prov­ing ever since.

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