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April 9th, 2012
01:51 PM ET

Santorum's daughter to leave hospital

Former Sen. Rick Santorum's daughter Isabella was released from the hospital Monday night, a spokesman tells CNN. The GOP presidential candidate interrupted his campaign Friday, when his 3-year-old daughter was hospitalized for reasons the campaign did not disclose.

Isabella suffers from a chromosomal disorder called Trisomy 18, where extra genetic material is present on chromosome 18. The extra material interferes with normal development, according to the National Institutes of Health.

“We appreciate the outpouring of support and prayers," said spokesman Hogan Gidley. "The prayers worked, she’s doing much better, so we’re thankful for that.  It puts things in perspective.”

Santorum expects to return to the campaign trail Tuesday.

Santorum has been outspoken and candid about his family's struggle against Trisomy 18, as he did when he sat down for a Red Chair interview (above) with CNN back in November.

Trisomy 18 occurs in about 1 in 5000 live births, according to the NIH, but many fetuses with this disorder do not survive a full pregnancy.

The NIH describes Trisomy 18 as "a relatively common syndrome," which is 3 times more likely in girls than in boys. It causes severe developmental and medical problems, including heart defects and defects to other organs prior to birth, shortened breast bones and club feet. Unlike Down syndrome, where a child has 3 copies of chromosome 21, developmental issues in Trisomy 18 are linked to medical complications that are more potentially life-threatening in the early months and years of life, according to the Trisomy 18 Foundation.

Children with Trisomy 18 sometimes can't cough or clear their throat so fluid will accumulate in the lungs, making them susceptible to respiratory failure.

In the past, Isabella has had pneumonia in both her lungs.

About 90% of children born with Trisomy 18 die within their first year of life, but a small number have gone on to reach adulthood into their 20s and 30s, although they've been severely impaired.

"She has a disorder called Trisomy 18, which we were told is incompatible with life," Santorum told CNN in November. "Well, we're showing that that's not only not true, but it is really the center of our life."


Filed under: Children's Health • Genetics

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    Genetic disorders is a rare kind of disease which is present from before birth.Although,its impossible to know all the disease information correctly.

    April 24, 2012 at 15:27 | Report abuse | Reply
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    April 27, 2012 at 07:56 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Islam

      An honest quotsien would be, does insurance have to cover everything? Particularly when it doesn't improve the health of the baby? Your son was diagnosed with a condition similar to my daughter's. I am so sorry for the pain of your loss. You know, no doubt, that kids with HLHS can sometimes survive if given palliative surgeries and that is what we chose. Because we knew in utero via *ultrasound* and fetal echo (services which Mr. Santorum has no qualms being paid by insurance, by the way), we were able to arrange for good and timely surgical care all arranged before she was even born. An amniocentesis, however, will never (never say never, right, so let's say extremely rarely, will it) provide information that will help parents prepare for a child's life-saving care upon birth. You see, the amnio detects genetic syndromes, not defects, like your Ray had and my daughter has. The only decision riding on an amnio is whether to carry on with the pregnancy, or not. And if you look at the stats, it's typically not. So, we could ask again does it make sense for us to pay for procedures which are not life-saving, nor enhancing? Should the parents want to pay out of pocket for an amnio or the newer non-invasive tests, no one is suggesting they cannot. When a procedure is free, drs will offer it more widely and we will be paying for procedures that are not really necessary at all, and certainly not life-saving. So, I ask again, must everything be covered? Or can we draw the line at procedures which when they detect nothing were certainly not justifiable, and when they detect something, are not life-saving, but instead, typically lead to abortion? It's not an unreasonable quotsien. Thanks for reading.

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  12. Aldair

    Santorum knows exactly what he is tknliag about. He is not wrong. I live in a country that has socialized medicine and I can tell that you options for treatment for children who could (or some would say) should have been aborted subsequent to a prenatal diagnosis, do not exist. For that matter, America is going in that direction too. The American Academy for Pediatrics and the American Heart Association both recommend that children like Bella should not even be resuscitated at birth. There is a great deal of money to be saved through the elimination of certain lives and if you believe that choice is something that exists now and will continue to exist, you are sadly mistaken.

    August 2, 2012 at 07:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Rupela

    As is always the case, when a glass is tipepd over you will find out what what was in it. When the Santorums' glass of life tipepd over (and tips over again now) what spills out is, simply, whatever was in it. It cannot be otherwise. What has filled their glass is quietness, trust, confidence and joy in life as it is. We have seen in recent days what the glasses of others are filled with as well, and what spills out when their glass is tipepd over. God bless this dear family today and help them to continue caring well for one another as they all care for Isabella.

    August 4, 2012 at 00:26 | Report abuse | Reply
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