Babies sometimes come into this world with a variety of unusual characteristics—a full head of hair, two different colored eyes, or even adorable twins coming into the world holding hands. One baby, Matthew Boler, came into this world with a strange-looking head.
Although Matthew’s parents were aware of it, they never thought it could be a problem.
“We’ve always noticed that his head was a little bit of an abnormal shape. It was very different from his sister’s but we didn’t think anything of it,” his mother Megan Boler told ABC News.
Matthew was born with a long, skinny head with a wide forehead.
During the baby’s first checkup at 2 months old, Matthew’s pediatrician noticed the baby’s odd head shape and said he could have a rare and dangerous condition, according to ABC.
“I was absolutely shocked. I felt like, my stomach drop out,” said his mother Megan.
Matthew was soon diagnosed with craniosynostosis. This causes some of the skull bones to fuse together too early, limiting space for the brain to grow. This meant the typical “soft spot” on his head was instead hard.
At 10 weeks old, Matthew had to get major surgery.
“I felt overwhelmed and scared about the well-being of our little boy. The name alone, craniosynostosis, is a mouthful and scary-sounding,” said Matthew’s mother.
Even though the diagnosis and surgery was stressful on the family, Matthew was fortunate that his condition was caught early. If craniosynostosis is not addressed in a timely manner, the issue can cause neurological problems.
Thank goodness for mandatory checkups!
During the surgery, doctors needed to separate the attached bones on the top of Matthew’s head, and the procedure turned out to be a success. Afterwards, Matthew had to wear a therapy helmet for four months until his skull healed.
Just a few days after surgery, Matthew’s parents said Matthew was back to his happy self!
Aside from helping heal and save Matthew, Megan said that Matthew’s diagnosis brought strength to the family and helped her learn to be able to trust others with her child’s health.
“I also learned to take Matthew’s lead. Whenever I began to feel overwhelmed or scared and I just looked at his smiling face and knew it was going to be OK. He met each obstacle with a smile,” she said.