BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - The Broome family knows firsthand the impact that the March of Dimes mission has on our local families.
This is the story of Katie, Justin, and their son, Jace Broome.
The Journey to Jace
Katie's pregnancy was progressing as normal like it should for any ordinary 24-year-old. At her 20-week ultrasound everything seemed to be going smoothly.
At exactly 24 weeks on Valentine's Day, Katie started experiencing discomfort that became worse as the night continued. Katie called the on-call doctor who advised Katie and Justin to come in to be evaluated. They arrived at the hospital around 10:30 p.m., three hours after Katie's labor started. After the nurse did routine checking she discovered that Katie was dilated 10 cm. and could feel Jace's back. Katie was rushed to the OR to have an emergency c-section.
Jace David Broome was born February 15, 2016 at 12:04 a.m. weighing 1lb. 5oz.
This started the Broome's 402-day hospital stay.
Jace had an uneventful three and a half month stay at the birth hospital. He later failed extubation five times and needed to be transferred to Children's of Alabama to have an airway evaluation. Things were more complicated once they got to Children's. Four days after moving to Children's, Jace was taken to the OR to have a tracheostomy evaluation. The Broomes were told that he did not need a trach. He remained on the ventilator until July when they were able to put him on high flow nasal canula. The end of July, Jace was having a hard time breathing again and had to be intubated again.
On September 3, he went to the OR to have another tracheostomy evaluation and came out with a trach. Recovery from the surgery took a few weeks.
November came around and the Broomes were talking about going home. Katie quit her job in preparation to be a full-time caregiver to Jace.
Right before Thanksgiving, Jace came down with a cold. Thanksgiving to Christmas was rough. Jace was the sickest he had ever been. He developed pulmonary hypertension. This put stress on his heart, causing him to need nitric oxide. The doctor came in and told Katie and Justin that he would either get better or get worse, and they were doing all that they could. Thankfully he got better and had a good Christmas.
The New Year rolled around and the Broomes were determined to get Jace home before his first birthday.
He was weaned off the ventilator and given multiple rounds of steroids to get his oxygen requirement down. Katie met with the doctor on January 23 and was prepared to be told they would be discharged soon.
It was that instant that the Broome's world came crashing down.
They were told that they would be at the hospital several more months. Katie knew there was something else that could be done and requested he be put back on a ventilator at night and to meet with the pulmonary team.
The pulmonologist met with Katie and Justin and together they made the decision for Jace to be on a home ventilator at night while he sleeps. It was then that the Broomes began their extensive three week training to bring their baby home. After a long 402 days, Katie and Justin brought Jace home on March 23.
Working with the March of Dimes
The March of Dimes was with the Broome family every step of the way. They not only offered support through the hard days but also celebrated on the good days. Through funding of the March of Dimes, breakthrough research and medicine have been discovered to help even the tiniest of babies like Jace. The Broomes are so grateful for everything the March of Dimes has done and continues to do for their miracle.