Stories about: short bowel syndrome (SBS).

Living his best life: Caring for Christian

little boy with short bowel syndrome wearing a fedora
PHOTOS: MICHAEL GODERRE/BOSTON CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

Christian Jaspersen was wet, muddy — and having the time of his life. After an ATV ride around his family’s rural Oklahoma farm with their grandfather, he and his two older brothers plopped themselves into a nearby mud puddle, playing with toy trucks and getting wonderfully messy. “For a while, we didn’t know if Christian would be able to have a ‘normal’ childhood,” says his mother, Rachel. “Having these experiences now is just so special.”

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‘Not to be stopped’: Dorothy’s story

recovery from short bowel

Dorothy Hardy “doesn’t walk, she dances,” says her mom, Carrie. “She just waltzes around the house, singing songs she makes up. She’s not to be stopped.” In fact, when the little girl injured her leg at the playground, she taught herself to dance while wearing a cast. It’s a resilient, determined attitude that Dorothy — now two-and-a-half years old — has had since she was diagnosed with jejunal atresia as a newborn.

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26.2 for three: A transplant nurse’s tribute to her patients

pediatric transplant
Desh and Lucas

Heartbreak Hill: It’s the notorious Boston Marathon landmark that runners both anticipate and dread. But when Deshanthi “Desh” Perera approaches that challenging climb on April 16, she’ll have special motivation propelling her uphill. Perera, a nurse working on the organ transplant inpatient unit of the Pediatric Transplant Center at Boston Children’s Hospital and first-time marathoner, isn’t just running for the glory of a personal best time or the satisfaction of completing the race. She’s running for all of the remarkable patients at Boston Children’s, including three of her own.

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Persevering after the unimaginable: Jacob’s journey with short bowel syndrome

little boy after treatment for short bowel syndrome

Yankees or Red Sox? Giants or Patriots? Rangers or Bruins? Seven-year-old Jacob Hersko and his physician, Dr. Christopher Duggan, may playfully debate whose hometown is better, but in one area, it’s clear that Boston comes out on top: “Jacob loves coming to Boston Children’s Hospital,” says his mother, Rachel. “He says it’s like going to Disney World.”

When she was pregnant with Jacob, Rachel and her husband, Geoff, never anticipated that they would be traveling to Boston every few months. The little boy was born at full-term, with no apparent complications. But when he was just a week old, the unimaginable happened: He was diagnosed with necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), a serious intestinal illness in babies that results in the death of intestinal tissues.

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