Thank you to Sophia for sharing her incredible personal story. Read more for her account of this inspiring journey.
My name is Sophia Migliorini and when my fiancé Travis Capacete and I found out we were pregnant, we were thrilled.
At our 20-week ultrasound, we found out we were having a baby boy and our excitement and anticipation only grew for his arrival. At this same appointment, however, things took a turn. I started to cry before they even told us that our baby boy’s heart appeared very bright in the ultrasound images, and they weren’t sure why. They supplied us with a long list of what this brightness could mean for our baby, none of which was promising or positive. The facts were harsh – we would never really know what was wrong until his birth, if we even made it to his birth, and we would have to get an ultrasound done weekly – every single Wednesday – on his heart.
Dr. Shubhika Srivastava ran a thorough fetal echo of Milo’s heart and met with us after she had reviewed the imaging. She asked me if I had ever been tested for lupus, I said “no”, and she asked me to go get tested the next morning for specific antibodies as she believed that the brightness had something to do with the possible existence of these antibodies. The next morning, bright and early, I went and got my blood drawn and sure enough – the antibodies came back and at high levels. Dr. Srivastava called me immediately upon my results and went over the plan that would change the trajectory of my pregnancy as we knew it.
Dr. Srivastava didn’t sugar coat anything – she told us that we were in a high-risk situation, and she wanted to see us every Wednesday to keep tabs on Milo’s heart. She immediately put me on steroids and scheduled me for 2 8-hour IVIG infusions to stop the inflammation and stop the process of antibodies that were crossing the placenta and affecting Milo’s heart rhythm, possibly causing heart block and heart failure.
What I’m telling you about Shubi, which is how we came to know her, doesn’t even graze the surface of the many things she did for us. You would have to listen to me speak this entire day if we went over all the ways she had supported us as a family throughout this pregnancy and birth.
Dr. Srivastava saved my baby’s life by treating this autoimmune condition which I later found out to be rheumatoid arthritis. I have no doubt that without her, Milo either wouldn’t be here with us, or he wouldn’t be as strong, happy, confident, and healthy as he is. He is a miracle, our miracle, and we have her quick thinking, brilliant knowledge of imaging and her kind heart to thank. I am deeply grateful to Nemours Children’s Health and to the American Heart Association.