2-Year-Old Girl Born Without a Windpipe Gets One Made Out of Her Own Stem Cells
Hannah Warren got a much-needed gift recently: a brand-new windpipe.
The 2-year-old, who was born in South Korea, had no windpipe at birth. A brave group of U.S. pediatricians and surgeons took on this groundbreaking nine-hour operation using stem cells from her own bone marrow.
Hannah is the youngest person to ever benefit from this surgery. Doctors in Seoul originally told her parents that she would probably die due to her many health issues. But she showed them all — the surgery was a huge success and she is now recovering nicely.
The new windpipe allows Hannah to breathe, drink, and swallow without a tube for the first time in her life, although currently she is still on a ventilator. Hannah’s father, Darryl Warren, also mentioned that she’s getting to taste food for the first time. What fun! Although she did tell him she “prefers Korean lollipops to American ones.”
"They hope that she can do everything that a normal child can do but it's going to take time,” said Darryl. “This is a brand new road that all of us are on. This is her only chance but she's got a fantastic one and an unbelievable one."