Baby Adam was born on Sept. 18, 2011, in Alipur, India with Bartsocas-Papas Syndrome - a rare genetic disorder that caused multiple birth defects.
Jessica and Raja Paulraj worked in the medical mission hospital where Baby Adam was born and adopted Adam. Jessica and Raja reached out to friends across the globe when Baby Adam couldn't get the care he needed in India. Brooke Gleason, a family support specialist at UNC, knew Jessica and shared Baby Adam's story with Dr. John van Aalst.
Dr. van Aalst agreed to provide care for Baby Adam, who arrived in Chapel Hill on Nov. 10, 2011.
In late 2011 and early 2012, Baby Adam required multiple surgical procedures, including upper eyelid reconstruction, a left corneal transplantation, and repair of a central facial cleft. He also required a tracheostomy in order to breathe. Because of problems with his GI tract, he needed a colostomy (an opening of the GI tract onto his abdominal wall); because Adam didn’t have fully developed legs, he needed procedures to remove excess tissue so he could eventually wear prostheses. Adam has no hands.
In May 2012, Baby Adam and his family returned to India. They returned to UNC in mid-August for his next set of surgeries, which will include palate repair, possible eye surgery, and surgical modification of his tracheostomy.