Woman loses baby with ‘mermaid syndrome’ a day before Mother’s Day
TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol – Losing a baby a day before the world celebrated Mother’s Day on Sunday was painful for Jean Lynes-Ingcog.
Ingcog, 37, a resident of Tiptip District in this city, gave birth to her 5th child on Saturday but the infant survived only for 13 hours and seven minutes.
The infant whom she named “Angel” suffered from a condition known as “sirenomelia,” or “Mermaid Syndrome,” a rare congenital deformity in which the legs are fused together, giving them the appearance of a mermaid’s tail.
The infant’s father’s, Michael, said that his wife attended every prenatal appointment throughout her pregnancy and took her supplements.
Michael, 38, said the ultrasound didn’t show the baby had deformities.
Jean also didn’t have a difficult time in labor.
But they were shocked to see the baby did not have two legs, but had a “tail”-like leg.
“Sakit sa amua nga namatay siya, nga nakaanak mi ingana ang sitwasyun. Okay ra nga ingana siya basta nabuhi (It was painful for us that the baby died and our baby had deformities. But we didn’t mind that she had deformities as long as she was alive),” said Michael.
Physicians said Angel was expected to live only for several hours or days due to her condition.
Being born with “mermaid syndrome” meant that Angel had only one partially working kidney, no lower colon or genital organs and legs fused from the waist down.
Some children who have survived sirenomelia have to undergo surgery to separate their legs.
Michael said they accepted Angel’s fate.
“We have accepted what happened to our daughter. For us, she is still a blessing from God,” he said. JE/rga
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