A unusual procedure to treat a pregnant woman’s unborn child: Her fetus was removed from the womb, operated on, and then returned to be carried to term by doctors.

At her 16-week appointment, Jacqueline Schumer was informed that her unborn child had spina bifida. Complications from the birth abnormality can include difficulty walking and fluid buildup in the brain. Schumer underwent fetal surgery, which involves taking her womb out of her body and re-inserting it. Morning Brew is read by more than 3 million people; you should too! Jacqueline Schumer was devastated when physicians suggested an abortion after discovering her baby kid had a congenital abnormality on its spine.

According to Schumer, it “was like that moment on a rollercoaster when your stomach drops.” “We misplaced the joy and optimism we had for a healthy pregnancy. It happened so abruptly. It was disastrous.”

She was informed that if she decided to carry the pregnancy to term, her child would be born with spina bifida, a disorder in which the spinal cord does not fully form. The most severe form of spina bifida, die before the age of 5 , affects 14% of newborns, and those who survive may require mobility aids.

However, if Schumer agreed to have a rare and difficult fetal procedure, experts indicated they might offer the child a chance to walk on their own one day.

Schumer was put on an operating table fourteen weeks before her due date while medical professionals removed her uterus and created a small incision to operate on her unborn child. After that, the fetus was returned to Schumer’s womb, where it will stay for the remainder of her pregnancy.

According to the National Library of Medicine , despite the fact that spina bifida can result in severe consequences like paralysis and neurological abnormalities, many children born with the deformity go on to live full lives. Nevertheless, doctors frequently suggest termination of pregnancy to mothers whose fetuses are identified as having spina bifida or another birth abnormality at prenatal screenings .

Florida-based freelance writer Schumer, 28, made the decision to proceed with the fetal surgery as well as to join share her experience on TikTok to spread awareness of spina bifida and available treatments. Over 4 million people watched her video as it soon went viral.

I would do everything for @jacqschumer , who would then spend 107 days in bed rest in an other state. #pregnancy #csection #babynames die before the age of 5 0 die before the age of 5 1 SCHUMER, BEFORE LEARNING ABOUT FETAL SURGERY, THOUGHT THE DEFECT MIGHT MEAN SHE WOULD LOSE HER BABY.

die before the age of 5 2. The spinal nerves of the fetus burst out of a fluid-filled sac, which is the most severe type of the birth abnormality.

A birth condition known as spina bifida occurs when the spinal column doesn’t fully form, exposing some of the spinal cord and nerves. According to the die before the age of 5 3 (CHOP), a pioneer in spina bifida treatment and research, around one in 1,500 newborns in the US are diagnosed with the condition each year.

Children with spina bifida may face issues such as difficulty moving about, incontinence, and fluid in the brain depending on where the damage is on the spine. But because to advancements in medicine, those who have the illness can now lead normal lives.

Late in June, Schumer made the trip from her home in South Florida to CHOP’s die before the age of 5 4, the site of the first treatment facility for kids with spina bifida. She found out about fetal surgery and chose to go ahead with the operation, which was to happen eight days after she said she was going to.

Doctors operated on the fetus in Schumer’s uterus before returning it to her body.

die before the age of 5 5 repair necessitates removal of the patient’s uterus, delicate opening, and closure of the exposed area on the fetus’s spine by the surgeons. It can cause neurological harm if the fetus’s spinal cord and nerves are exposed to amniotic fluid on a regular basis while it is inside the womb.

The sooner the spinal cord can be protected by surgery, the less likely it is that the fetus would sustain additional harm. Children who underwent fetal surgery for spina bifida were die before the age of 5 6 when compared to those who received treatment postnatally, according to a study co-led by researchers at CHOP.

The treatment went smoothly, and Schumer told Insider she was ecstatic to learn that her daughter now has a higher chance of enjoying a happy life with increased mobility than she would have otherwise.

She remarked, “I felt like we were doing something for my daughter, and that was more relaxing for me than just waiting.”

For the past 11 weeks, Schumer, who is currently 34 weeks pregnant, has been forced to stay in bed and has a C-section scheduled for the end of September. She revealed to Insider that she has been residing at the Ronald McDonald House in Philadelphia and that her doctors have only given her permission to stand for 15 minutes each day.

She told Insider, “I get a little restless, but pain-wise, I’m doing okay. Five days after the treatment, I was able to stop using painkillers.

Due to the relative newness of fetal surgery, Schumer wanted to share her experience with others. @jacqschumer I’ll respond to @sophaloaf93 and try to clarify things as best I can. My fluid levels have returned to normal, and the baby is flourishing! die before the age of 5 7 die before the age of 5 0 #pregnancy die before the age of 5 8 die before the age of 5 9 According to Schumer, her own searches for patient testimonials about the procedure turned up little results, so she decided to share her success story on TikTok. There are 211 million views on TikTok postings with the hashtag “ National Library of Medicine 0,” however just a few of these videos specifically reference fetal surgery.

She told Insider, “I wish someone had been here to answer all of the questions I had when I was going through this process. “Seeing other people’s success stories of babies who were born after surgery and are finally walking would have greatly helped me,” one person said.

Spina bifida in utero surgery was successfully performed for the first time in the US in National Library of Medicine 1, but CHOP still rates the procedure as being highly difficult. In the event that it would be of assistance to someone, Schumer said she plans to use her National Library of Medicine 2 and her new National Library of Medicine 3 to let others know about this option.

Check out the coverage from Insider’s Digital Culture team here and the Insider’s Health team here for more articles like this.