Baby heart teacher receives prestigious international accolade for outstanding work – The First News

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Professor Marzena Dębska is Poland’s only perinatologist, a doctor who performs complex heart operations on babies still in the womb.
Marzena Debska/Facebook

Poland’s only perinatologist, a doctor who performs complex heart operations on babies still in the womb, has been awarded a prestigious international medical award for her outstanding work.

Warsaw-based Professor Marzena Dębska, who has performed more than 140 operations on babies in the womb diagnosed with complex heart defects, received the 2022 Research Prize “for her inspiring work on fetal heart interventions” from the Holm Schneider Foundation for Prenatal Therapy in Erlangen, Germany.

Professor Dębska, who has performed more than 140 operations on babies in the womb diagnosed with complex heart defects, received the 2022 Research Prize “for her inspiring work on fetal heart interventions” from the Holm Schneider Foundation for the prenatal therapy in Erlangen, Germany.Dębski Clinic/Facebook

Presented every two years, the prize is awarded by an independent panel of experts who assess and reward the greatest achievements in prenatal therapy made by healthcare professionals around the world.

The number of operations carried out by Professor Dębska and his team places Poland third in the world for the number and also the effectiveness of prenatal operations.

With babies’ hearts in the womb the size of a Polish 5 groszy coin or a British one pence coin, Professor Dębska’s work is extremely complex.

The number of operations carried out by Professor Dębska and his team places Poland third in the world for the number and also the effectiveness of prenatal operations.Dębski Clinic/Facebook

She said, “The heart is working all the time, we don’t stop it. We anesthetize the baby and the mother. We find our way into the heart chamber, which is constantly contracting, and the valve, which is narrowed, has a diameter of 2-3 millimeters.

“[Heart defects] are one of the most common causes of newborn death. This is a very serious defect which, until the 1980s, was 100% fatal.

Despite the complexity, Dębska has been performing this type of surgery for more than 10 years and has received praise from her colleagues and the parents of the babies she has helped care for.

Dębska has been performing this type of surgery for more than 10 years and has received praise from her colleagues and the parents of the babies she has helped care for.Marzena Debska/Facebook

Małgorzata Kowal, mother of 7-month-old boy Jaś, whose heart was operated on by Professor Dębska when she was in the 26th week of pregnancy after prenatal tests revealed a serious heart defect, said: “It’s a miracle what his heart looked like before. and after the operation… for the moment he is a healthy child.

“What is important is that the heart is functioning normally and that is what we are happiest with.”

Professor Dębska also saved the life of Zuzia, whose fetal heart defect was a life sentence for her parents because they lived in Vietnam, where prenatal prenatal heart failure is not performed.

Traveling to Germany to receive the prize, Professor Dębska, who established and runs the Debski Clinic in Warsaw, said she hoped the prize would lead to collaboration between Poland and Germany in the field of therapy prenatal.Dębski Clinic/Facebook

As a result, Zuzia’s parents made the decision to travel to Poland to see Dębska, who was able to operate on her and give her a chance for a normal functioning heart.

The girl’s father, Piotr Frieske, said: “Right now Zuza is blessed with a two-chambered heart and, thanks to that, a happy life.”

Traveling to Germany to receive the prize, Professor Dębska, who established and runs the Debski Clinic in Warsaw, said she hoped the prize would lead to collaboration between Poland and Germany in the field of therapy prenatal.


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