Abigail Faith Haynes was born on May 7, 2012. She had what appeared to be a bruise on her left cheek. When it did not disappear, her doctor decided it was a birthmark. When Abigail was 2 months old, a hemangioma appeared on the back of her head. Her pediatrician wanted her to see a pediatric dermatologist to make sure nothing more serious was causing these birthmarks. We took Abigail to Emory in Atlanta. The dermatologist said there was no need for concern. She believed that both the mark on the back of her head and the mark on her cheek were hemangiomas. She said they would not get any larger and would eventually disappear on their own. In mid-February of 2013, we noticed the area on her cheek expanding and growing into her mouth. She was also beginning to have trouble eating and pulling at her cheek, crying due to pain. I called her dermatologist and they were concerned. They ordered a MRI. After almost 2 weeks of waiting for results, we were contacted by her doctor. Her doctor told us that she had met with several doctors about Abigail's MRI and they were unanimous in agreeing that she had something called Venous Malformations. There were 3 Malformations: one in her left cheek, one in her lip, and one in her tongue. A Venous Malformation is made up of a plexus of dilated veins. The blood flow through these veins is slow. They are forms of benign tumors. Abigail's are deep set in the tissue. They have no growth life, which means that unless they are removed in full, they will continue to grow throughout her entire life. Venous Malformations go through a rapid growth phase during puberty. Since Abigail's Venous Malformations are located in her mouth, they can affect her breathing, eating, and speech if not controlled or removed. They can also disfigure her. Her dermatologist at Emory said there was nothing they could do beyond Sclerotherapy (a procedure to try and close off some of the veins to stop blood flow to them and therefore slowing the growth of the Malformations) and that she would have to deal with this for the rest of her life. They said they could remove masses as they formed throughout her life. My husband and I had a hard time accepting this. My brother-in-law, who is a doctor in Tennessee, told us about Dr. Milton Waner, a specialist in New York City, who is world renowned for his treatment of these Malformations. During my brother-in-law's residency he had witnessed the miracles Dr. Waner performed in surgically removing Malformations. Patients travel from all over the world to seek his help. I contacted his office on March 11, 2013. They agreed to help her! Because we are traveling from so far away, they will do consultation and surgery in the same week. We have sent off her pictures and MRI to his office so he can determine the best way to remove them. They will schedule her consult and surgery for some time in May. Unfortunately, this is a long way to travel and Dr. Waner is not in network with our BlueCross BlueShield Insurance. However, nothing will stop us from getting our sweet baby girl the help she needs!
It is evident God is with us! Abigail has a smile that will light up any room and we are going to make sure she keeps it! -Jessica and Travis Haynes