Jonna Higgins-Freeseâ€™s pregnancy was picture perfect up until the 15th hour of delivery. Jonnaâ€™s stressful labor caused increased movement in Reubenâ€™s intestines and relaxation of the anal sphincter causing Reuben to poop inside the womb which allowed Meconium to pass into the surrounding amniotic fluid.
Meconium aspiration syndrome is a leading cause of severe illness and death in newborns and it wasnâ€™t until six weeks after Reuben was born that Jonna and her husband Eric knew that he would live. Reuben was eventually put on an ECMO machine, a complex therapy that involved a pump that circulates blood through an artificial lung back into the bloodstream of an infant.The ECMO machine is essentially a heart-lung bypass support that provides the infant with adequate oxygen allowing time for the lungs and heart to â€śrestâ€ť and heal.
Reuben was eventually weaned from the ECMO machine and onto a high speed ventilator with the prognosis that he will most likely grow up to be a happy, healthy child.