Avery Ernsberger was born December 14, 2002. His mom, Deanna, was overjoyed, to say the least; however, she noticed that Avery spit up a lot. She knew babies spit up, but Avery was different. His was extreme. “I could tell something wasn’t right. I was afraid he would choke in his sleep.”
After many sleepless days and nights, Avery was diagnosed at five weeks with Pyloric Stenosis, which was the cause of his severe reflux. He had his first surgery at seven weeks in Dothan. Two weeks after his surgery he still wasn’t any better. His mom insisted he be taken to Children’s, and he was rushed to Birmingham in the middle of the night, arriving shortly after 1 a.m. He was now seven weeks old, and Dr. Barnhardt performed his second surgery the next morning. Though Avery’s surgery went well, he continued to have complications and they made numerous trips to Children’s. Deanna said “he basically lived on antibiotics.”
After many tests at Children’s the doctor’s continued to search for answers. When he was 2-years-old they found the source of Avery’s problems and a procedure called Nissen fundoplication was performed, whereby the doctors went in and tightened the muscles around his esophagus. This surgery made all the difference in Avery’s health. There were a few adjustments made after that procedure, but today, Deanna says Avery is a happy little boy.
“Other than the scars on his tummy, you would never know he ever had any problems. I don’t know what we would have done without Children’s Hospital. It’s a miracle place and Avery is our little angel.”
Avery has had a total of 12 surgeries, but his mom says he’s doing great today and will turn five this December. He loves baseball and says he hits the ball like Derek Jeter. He plans to play baseball for the New York Yankees.