Baby born with heart outside chest defies odds

NEED TO KNOW
  • Audrina Cardenas born with rare heart condition
  • Toddler now has special heart protector

Editor’s note: The above video contains graphic content some may find disturbing. Viewer discretion is advised.

Six months ago, Audrina Cardenas was born in Houston with much of her heart beating outside of her chest.  Now three months after an operation to put her heart in its proper place, the little girl is finally leaving the hospital.

There's still a lot of recovering to do.  Audrina's mom tells HLN affiliate KTRK that her daughter will still be on oxygen, a feeding tube and faces surgery to create a breast bone. For now, her heart is protected by a specially made hard, pink shield.

The family won't be going all the way home to Odessa, Texas just yet. Audrina still has to stay close to the hospital. But considering that most children born with this defect don't live more than a few days, Audrina's baby steps away from the hospital are certainly something to celebrate.

 

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