Miracle for Mateo was initially established in February 2010 for the Paredes Family and their son, Mateo Sebastian Paredes. Baby Mateo was born with a rare congenital heart defect and experienced multiple life threatening complications after his first surgery.
Mateo was born on October 5, 2009, with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome and Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return. This meant Mateo needed a series of surgeries and medical procedures, required the assistance of additional oxygen, and numerous medications in order to remain stable.
Mateo's parents knew from 22 weeks gestation that their first son would need to be born at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), in order to be given the immediate attention and care from the experienced medical staff at CHOP's Special Delivery Unit. During Mateo's first four months of life at CHOP, he endured open heart surgeries, cardiac arrest, 15 days on an ECMO total life support machine, a pacemaker implantation, two strokes (that took Mateo's vision), and beginning a wait for a heart transplant. After realizing Mateo had experienced a second stroke during or after a cardiac catheterization, doctors agreed that it would be inhumane to continue to treat Mateo, and he was sent home on hospice care on February 8, 2010.
Mateo spent February, March and most of April at home with his family, being cared for day and night by his parents with hospice staff only a phone call away. Every two hours Mateo required one or more of 14 medications, supplements and/or his formula. Often, Mateo would need treatments with a nebulizer and frequent suctioning so he could breathe well, but his family thought the best treatments were hugs, love and "kiss therapy."
While his parents focused on caring for Mateo and keeping the family afloat financially, Mateo's extended family organized a benefit dinner that was held on April 16, 2010. On April 21, 2010, Mateo was having extreme difficulty breathing and seemed to be in critical condition. After his parents called 911, Baby Mateo was rushed by ambulance to Nemours A.I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, DE.
Mateo was evaluated by a new team of doctors and nurses, and was intubated and stabilized. While at Nemours, Mateo had another open heart surgery and his pulmonary veins were opened using a marsupialization technique. Unfortunately, when doctors learned that Mateo’s pulmonary veins were again narrowing, Mateo was sent home on hospice care for the second time on June 6, 2010.
While Mateo's parents continued to seek out alternative treatment methods and options for Mateo, on July 10, 2010, Mateo took his last breath at home surrounded by his family. Mateo Sebastian Paredes lived nine amazing months and brought a number of people closer to God, to believe in the power of prayer and faith. Those who knew him called him Super Mateo, the brave little baby boy born with only half a heart, who smiled and loved through all of his struggles and suffering.