Nathan’s ABS Story

Nathan David was born on March 1, 2000 missing all of his left hand just below the wrist due to Amniotic Band Syndrome. I will never forget the day my son was born. I had never heard of ABS or known anyone who had had it.

I had one ultrasound at 20 weeks and everything appeared fine. I however knew that something was wrong. Nathan is my second child (I have three). When I was four weeks pregnant I started cramping and spotting and became violently ill. I was also experiencing a severe backache and felt certain I was having a miscarriage. I did not miscarry and the ultrasound at 20 weeks showed nothing. However, all the doctors that have seen Nathan feel certain he had already lost his hand by 20 weeks, probably at around 4 weeks when I was so ill. I continued to spot the rest of the pregnancy but my OB/GYN was not concerned. When I requested additional ultrasounds she refused saying they were unnecessary. I felt otherwise and wish I had insisted more, not that it would have changed anything but his birth would not have been such a shock for us.

He was delivered via c-section. The nurses whisked him away so fast that I knew something was wrong. My husband was devastated and all I could think about was all the things he wouldn’t be able to do. It was a sad time and I must say that the nurses and doctors did not handle the emotional aspects of it well. The OB/GYN and the nurses I had were so insensitive to the feelings I was flooded with after finding out he had no hand. The pediatrician was the most understanding by far. We spent months seeing doctors who could offer us no help. I wasn’t able to cry until a week after I brought him home.

Since then I have learned to accept him just as he is and I am so thankful that he is here. We forget that he has a “difference!” There has been nothing so far that he has wanted to do that he has not been able to do successfully. He is a beautiful blue eyed blonde and so talkative and active. We are incredibly proud of him. I wish there were more medical answers on this condition.

I live in the Houston area if anyone would like to contact me.