Mateo Sebastian Paredes
Miracle for Mateo, a registered 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, was initially established in February 2010 for the Paredes Family, after their son, Mateo Sebastian Paredes, was born with a rare congenital heart defect (CHD) and experienced multiple life threatening complications after his initial surgery.
Born on October 5, 2009, with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS) and Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR), Mateo needed a series of surgeries and medical procedures, and 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 doctors and nurses 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 the ECMO total life support machine, having a pacemaker implanted, suffering two strokes (that took Mateo's vision), and being placed on the waiting list for 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 and hospice staff only a phone call away. Every two hours Mateo required one or more of 14 medications, supplements and/or his formula for his feeding tube. Often, Mateo would need treatments with the nebulizer and frequent suctioning so he could breathe well, but his family thought the best treatments were his 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 because it was the nearest hospital for children.
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 to know God, to believe in the power of prayer and faith, and those who knew him adored him as Super Mateo, the brave little baby boy, born with only half a heart, who smiled and loved through all of his struggles and suffering.