Jacob Gibbs is doing well, just a few months after becoming the youngest baby to receive a liver transplant at St. Louis Children's Hospital. He also is among the youngest babies in the world to ever receive a transplanted liver.
Doctors diagnosed Jacob in utero with OTC-deficiency, a rare metabolic disorder that also affected his mother and maternal grandmother. The condition has traditionally been fatal in males, usually allowing baby boys to survive only a few days or weeks after birth. When doctors confirmed Jacob had the condition, doctors at SLCH and Barnes-Jewish Hospital began plans to prepare Jacob for transplant even before his birth on January 10, 2006.
Just 10 days after Jacob was born, transplant surgeon, Jeffrey Lowell, MD, and his medical team transplanted Jacob's liver. It took several surgeries to fit the donor liver into Jacob's tiny body. "He's recovering so well and showing no signs of rejection," says Dr. Lowell, chief of pediatric transplant surgery at the hospital, "It's such an incredible feeling to be part of the team that helped give Jacob the chance to live a normal, healthy life." Dr. Ross Shepherd and SLCH transplant coordinators continue to follow up with Jacob to make sure his recovery continues smoothly. Jacob, his mother, Keeley, and father, Brian, live in Eldorado, Illinois.