LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - An Artesia, New Mexico family is celebrating big today. Not only are they celebrating the 4th birthday of their quadruplets, but they’re also celebrating the fact that one of the quads was able to come home after having heart surgery at Covenant Children’s.
Cassie Sanchez gave birth to Arrow (3 lbs. 7 oz.), Gunner (3 lbs. 1 oz.), Cheyenne (2 lbs. 14 oz.) and Scarlett (2 lbs. 11 oz.) on May 3, 2017. Two girls and two boys. Cassie was in the hospital for 10 weeks before they were born. She was at 30 weeks when she went into labor.
Gunner was born with two holes in his heart.
“He developed a heart condition where he develops scar tissue,” said Dr. Vincent Tam, Cardiothoracic surgery with Cook Children’s.
Doctors at Covenant Health, in a partnership with Cook Children’s, were able to make Gunner’s heart whole again so he can keep up with his siblings in any sport he wants to play.
“You would never know. He is the rowdiest one. He eats the most. He’s the most outgoing - runs and plays all day. He is our best eater too. He doesn’t get tired, so there is no way to know he had anything wrong,” said his parents Cassie and Donavin Sanchez.
Dr. Vincent Tam is the Director of Cardiac Surgery at Cook Children’s. In partnership with Covenant Health, he makes the trip to Lubbock to perform pediatric heart procedures on a regular basis.
Dr. Tam says, “If we waited until we could tell something’s wrong, we have waited way, way, way too long. If we were to see symptoms in a kid this age, we’re really in trouble because by then, the valve is really messed up and there’s a lot of narrowing so his heart would have been overworked for years.”
The good news is that Dr. Tam is very optimistic about Gunner’s recovery. He says, “Little kids are so resilient. almost by the time he goes home, he’ll be back to normal.”
Donavin and Cassie were able to take Gunner home today, on his birthday. His big brother Hazen, who is now 8, is sure to also be excited.
Multiples are no surprise in this family. Cassie, Gunner’s mother, has an identical twin. Donavin also has multiples in his family.