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US mother calls daughter 'baby hulk' after she was born with lymphangioma

The Kentucky-based mother had an ultrasound during the 17th week and found out that her child had lymphangioma

By Web Desk
September 25, 2023
Chelsey, a mother in the United States with her newborn daughter Armani Milby. — Twitter @caters
Chelsey, a mother in the United States with her newborn daughter Armani Milby. — Twitter @caters

Chelsey, a mother in the United States, nicknamed her infant daughter Armani Milby 'baby Hulk' after she was born with an enormous chest and arms, caused by lymphangioma.

Following a diagnosis of a severe form of lymphangioma at 33 weeks, Armani Milby had to be delivered through an emergency C-section.

The uncommon congenital illness results in fluid-filled, non-cancerous lymph vessel growths.

It caused Armani's upper torso to swell, which her mother Chelsey claimed made her appear like a small bodybuilder, prompting her to affectionately refer to the child as mini, or baby, Hulk.

The 33-year-old said, "When I saw her, I cried because I had never seen anything like that. I was just shocked."

"But I didn’t care what she looked like, I loved her anyway."

At birth, Brave Armani weighed 12 pounds, which is more than three times the typical infant weight for that stage of gestation. She is currently nine months old.

Chelsey claimed that because of the enormous size of her belly, people frequently believed she was carrying triplets.

Things got so bad that she cried every day and found it difficult to walk towards the end of her pregnancy when she had gained 14st 4lbs.

"My body was shutting down," she said.

"I suffered every day. I could never sleep. I was extremely sick."

"It was getting harder to live life and actually breathe because I was so uncomfortable as I had to keep getting fluid drained out of my stomach."

At the 17-week milestone, Chelsey had an ultrasound and found out that her child had lymphangioma.

The family held out hope for the unborn kid despite the doctors' worries about possible fluid around her heart and potential future respiratory or eyesight problems.

Thankfully, it is currently believed that Armani's illness is surgically treatable.

Chelsey, from Campbellsville in Kentucky, US, said, "I had never, ever heard of the diagnosis before and honestly, after looking into it, I didn't really like the results with some of the pictures."

"I was devastated, I was heartbroken, and I didn't understand what happened because I had two other healthy babies so I cried every day."

"Abortion was mentioned to us but we never considered it. We just wanted to know how we could help her when she was born."

"[Doctors] literally gave her a zero per cent chance; they said she wouldn’t make it and that she probably wouldn’t be crying when she came out."

"I was so stunned when I saw her that I started crying. But I still love her regardless of how she looks."

"It was a surprise to everyone," she said.

She also added: "I was screaming and crying. I was just a wreck, it was horrible. In the back of our minds, Armani's dad Blake and I were wondering what was going to happen. "However, she just shocked us all and proved us all wrong. Everybody in the room was emotional. It's a very magical story."

The family travelled more than 100 miles to Cincinnati, Ohio, where they lived for three months in a specialised hospital after Armani was born.

Against all odds, the child started to get better slowly.

Chelsey said, "I battled postpartum depression really badly and I had to push that away to try to be the strongest person I could be for her and for my other two kids."

"It's been a rollercoaster ride and I still struggle a little bit every day."

Armani's body has had a significant quantity of surplus fluid removed, yet she still has extra skin.

She is dressed in clothing intended for babies twice her age despite weighing just 7 lbs.

The child will undergo surgery later this year during which additional lymphatic veins will be removed to help diminish her physique.