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Venous and Lymphatic Malformation
Ezra Wade

Ezra Clint Wade was born on April 23, 2013, and appeared as normal as any other healthy, 8lb 15oz boy. It wasn’t until 6 weeks later, when we were giving him a bath, that we discovered a large, marble sized, blue lump on his neck which appeared in a matter of an hour. Panicked, we rushed him to the local ER where we weren’t given much of a diagnosis other than it wasn’t cancer, and it wasn’t life threatening at this time. We were asked to see our pediatrician the next morning when the office opened and she immediately sent us to Children’s of Birmingham for further testing. You cannot imagine the fear and anxiety coursing through our bodies during that 4 hour drive- I don’t think we said a word; we were brand new parents and had googled every possibility it could be from a jugular aneurysm to cystic hygroma. A CT Scan was performed and it was confirmed Ezra had a Venous and Lymphatic Malformation- hallelujah- a diagnosis. Unfortunately, as we would soon find out, it is a complicated one. We were told that his scans would have to be reviewed by a board of specialists as it was difficult to treat being two different malformations in one. So, we came home and waited for the board to meet. When we relayed the diagnosis to our local physicians many were unaware that malformations can happen after birth as most occur while in-utero. Two weeks later, the lump had doubled in size and we were asked to return to Children’s for an MRI- That’s when we met Dr. Brian Kulbersh with Otolayrngology. He is also the founder of the Vascular Anomalies team at Children’s. Dr. Kulbersh eased our anxieties and treated us with all the care we needed during this confusing and frightening time. He reassured us that this was, in fact, a complicated malformation but not one that couldn’t be rectified with time and surgery. Once the MRI was completed, it was determined that the malformation would not affect Ezra’s airway and he was safe to go home and get a little bigger so he could withstand the surgery needed to remove it. We kept in close contact with Dr. Kulbersh over the next few months; sending him pictures and naming the malformation “Fred”. When we finally got to the 6month mark we could go ahead with having “Fred” removed. It was 1 day before Ezra’s 6 month birthday when we handed our son over, with every confidence new parents could have, to Dr. Kulbersh and his surgical team. We, and everyone we knew, had been praying in preparation for this day. Approximately 2 hours later, an ecstatic Dr. Kulbersh came to tell us our son did perfectly and we could forever kiss “Fred” goodbye….. to God be the Glory! Less than 24 hours later we were on the road home with nothing more than a 2 inch scar to remind us of how fortunate we were to have been led to Dr. Kulbersh and the very capable hands at Children’s Hospital. We will forever keep Children’s close to our hearts for the life they gave back to Ezra. We didn’t just get healing at Children’s; we received a new extended family. We are proud Ezra is a Child of Children’s and can say with full confidence that if the need ever arises, we will always trust our children’s health to Children’s of Birmingham.
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