Child born with his brain outside skull continues to defy all odds

Doctors told Dustin and Sierra Yoder that their son, Bentley, would be “‘incompatible with life.”

He was born with a rare condition called encephalocele, which caused his skull to form incorrectly, forcing part of his brain to grow up and out of his skull.

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The Yoders expected to bury tiny Bentley shortly after his birth; he was given little chance of survival.

But they were wrong.

When he was 7 months old, Bentley underwent surgery under the care of Dr. John Meara at Boston Children’s Hospital.

STAT News reported that Meara planned to slice Bentley's skull in several places, and spread it out to make more room in his head.

Meara then planned to take to segments of skull elsewhere and overlap them at the top of Bentley's head to close the encephalocele.

Meara tested the idea with 3-D printed brain image scans.

The surgery and additional follow-up surgeries have been successful.

Although he is expected to have developmental delays, Bentley's parents are determined to help make his life as normal as possible.

Saving Bentley's Brain

Bentley was born with part of his brain outside his skull. Could a daring surgery save him?

Posted by STAT on Wednesday, June 15, 2016

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