Newborn Owen arrived at Children’s National Hospital lethargic and unresponsive. He had Cytomegalovirus, which resulted in a potentially-fatal infection that can cause hearing loss in infants. Infectious disease specialist Dr. DeBiasi examined Owen and prescribed antiviral drugs.

Lisa, Owen’s mom, worried about potential side effects, but trusted Dr. DeBiasi and her team. Owen was not well enough to leave the house much of the time. Lisa quit her job to care for him. “We found ourselves in a very dark place,” she says. “Support from familiar faces at Children’s National and their investment in Owen’s small successes as he fought to sit, stand, walk and climb gave us the encouragement to keep going.”

Every two weeks, Lisa brought Owen to Children’s National to monitor his recovery. Care included visits to our audiology, ophthalmology, neurology, occupational and physical therapy departments. 

“Dr. DeBiasi was always the one to call me with his numbers, which dictated if we could leave the house,” Lisa says. “She has wonderful credentials, but what mattered most was that she felt for us and that Owen was the most important baby to her when we were together. She was always easily available and calm and reassured us that we would make it past this stage.”

Owen, now 4, is thriving. He loves to play with his big brother Easton and to wave to the mailman. He has no hearing loss, so far. He sees Dr. DeBiasi for a check-up once a year. Lisa says, “It’s awesome to see her joy in watching Owen grow.”

A young patient at Children's National Hospital.

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A young patient at Children's National Hospital.