Indonesian baby in KKH with rare tumour undergoes successful 7-hour surgery

Mr Junadi Lim showing a picture of his baby daughter, Jeslyn Lim. ST PHOTO: AZIZ HUSSIN
A photo from from when Jeslyn was first born on Nov 23. PHOTO: JUNAIDI LIM

SINGAPORE - Jeslyn Lim, a 12-day-old Chinese Indonesian baby who arrived in Singapore earlier this week to remove a tumour larger than the size of her body, underwent successful surgery at the KK Women's and Children's Hospital (KKH) on Friday (Dec 4).

The operation, which lasted seven hours, ended at about 5pm.

She will remain at KKH for a week to recuperate and will have to return to Singapore subsequently for monthly check-ups.

Her uncle, 34-year-old salesman Johnny Wu, told The Straits Times that her condition stabilised in the morning and doctors began operating at 10am. The operation went ahead as scheduled even though it was initially postponed on Thursday as doctors said she had low blood pressure.

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Jeslyn has a rare condition known as sacrococcygeal teratoma (SCT), a tumour formed before birth that occurs in one in 35,000 to 40,000 live births. She weighed 7.3kg at birth because of the tumour at the base of her tailbone. A newborn infant weighs about 3.5kg on average.

Doctors told her parents that the operation would take at least six hours, and that the baby has an 80 per cent chance of survival.

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Chinese Indonesian baby Jeslyn Lim was diagnosed with Sacrococcygeal Teratoma, a condition where a tumour is located at the base of the tailbone, not long after she was conceived. She now lays in the Children's Intensive Care Unit at KK Women's and Children's Hospital in critical condition.

Her condition is a complex one because she also has atrial septal defect, a hole in the muscular wall of her heart, which leads to reduced oxygen supply to the brain, organs and tissue.

As a large proportion of her tumour is made up of solid tissue that is fed by blood, there is greater strain on her heart, which has to work doubly hard.

Her mother, housewife Novi Ratna Sari, 22, arrived in Singapore from Batam at about 2pm on Friday and went to wait at the hospital.

She told The Straits Times that she was happy and relieved that the operation was a success, and that she was grateful for the help given to them.

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