Parents’ agonizing fight to raise $100,000 after one of their twin boys was born without an anus requiring 8 grueling months in hospital, 7 surgeries, and more to come
- Jackson Kuhn was born with skin covering his anus, requiring seven surgeries
- Imperforate anuses affect 1 in every 5,000 births, disproportionately boys
- It dealt a tough blow to his fragile body, leaving him routinely sick
- He’s now home but he still needs a colostomy bag and has to wait to grow before he can have reconstruction surgery
- His parents say every minute with him is worth it but they are ‘stressed and depressed’ by the onslaught of medical concerns and medical bills
- Click here to donate to their GoFundMe
A baby boy born last summer without an anus is finally heading home after doctors spent months trying to repair his birth defect.
Jackson Brian Kuhn has a twin brother Jamison, who was not born with any defects and was discharged days after they were born in Pennsylvania in July.
But Jackson, born with skin covering his anus, endured a tough start, undergoing seven surgeries, which dealt a tough blow to his fragile body, leaving him routinely sick.
Finally, after eight months, doctors decided Jackson can go home, although he still needs a colostomy bag and has to wait a few more months to be ready for full reconstruction surgery.
Struggling with the tumult of medical bills, his parents, Andrew Kuhn and Katie Faulkner, were urged by friends to set up a GoFundMe page.
Jackson Brian Kuhn has a twin brother Jamison, who was not born with any defects and was discharged days after they were born in Pennsylvania in July
Shortly after the boys were born, the doctors fell silent as they examined Jackson in a nerve-wracking few minutes for Andrew and Katie, who was still delirious from the surgery
‘He’s a strong boy already and is going to put up a strong fight,’ Kuhn wrote on the page.
‘Thank you all for your love and support. I’m not one to be a charity case, but I just would love everyone prayers to continue for this family.’
The couple spoke recently to Fox 43 about the nerve-wracking moment in the delivery room when their doctors turned quiet.
Their two boys were both delivered via C-section, but as the doctors cleaned them up the were working slower, studying closer, and speaking in hushed tones with one another.
‘I saw that they were examining one of the babies, they had the other one, and took him away and a bunch of doctors were surrounding,’ Kuhn said.
‘I was just like something doesn’t seem right something doesn’t feel right.’
The doctors came back and informed them that Jackson had an imperforate anus, which affects one in every 5,000 babies, and is more common in boys.
It is normally coupled with other abnormalities of the rectum, but the immediate concern is reconstruction surgery to remove the extra patch of skin.
The little boys sharing a moment together. Despite Jackson’s ordeals, they are close
It’s not clear what causes children to develop an imperforate anus, but it’s clear that it happens very early in gestation – around five to seven weeks.
The exact type of surgery they need depends on their defect.
Some may have a rectum that is severely underdeveloped, which will require surgeons pulling through to attach the rectum to the new one they have fashioned surgically. They may also need to work with the surrounding organs to ensure they are not connected to the rectum.
Beyond the emotional ordeal, the Kuhn-Faulkner family have financial stress to face.
To keep up, they need an eye-watering $100,000.
‘You feel depressed and stressed out every day you’re thinking what’s going to happen next and what bill is going to come in the mail next,’ Kuhn told Fox.
But, he added: ‘Just seeing his smiling face every day home with us beats any bill.’