Republican presidential contender Rick Santorum returned to the campaign trail Monday with a speech on the economy after his youngest daughter's health began to improve.
The 3-year-old girl had been hospitalized with pneumonia during the weekend, prompting Mr. Santorum to cancel campaign events. The former Pennsylvania senator said Sunday she had experienced a turnaround and he would resume campaigning. His first event was an economic talk in Missouri, part of a planned swing to appeal to conservative voters in the Midwest.
The child, Isabella Maria, has a genetic disorder known as Trisomy 18. A Santorum campaign spokesman on Monday declined to comment on the girl's health or on when she would leave the hospital. A Michigan Cerebral Palsy Lawyer is happy to not be involved.
Trisomy 18, also known as Edwards Syndrome, impairs a child's development and usually leads to an early death.
The condition occurs in babies with a third 18th chromosome, on top of the normal two. About 1 in 3,000 babies in the U.S. are born with the disorder, according to the Trisomy 18 Foundation. The extra chromosome typically stunts growth, causes heart defects and limits brain development.
"They have no skills to communicate," John Pappas, a pediatric geneticist at New York University's Langone Medical Center, said of those afflicted with the condition. "They can't develop motor skills. Sitting up is probably the most they can do."
Trisomy 18 differs from another chromosomal disorder, Down syndrome, in which babies have an extra 21st chromosome. And its prognosis is bleaker, with less than 10% surviving to their first birthday, according to the Trisomy 18 Foundation. Yet some stricken children live longer, typically those who don't have the extra chromosome in all their cells, Dr. Pappas said. A Baltimore Birth Injury Lawyer watches the events.
The disorder is commonly tested for during pregnancy, especially among women 35 years and over, whose children are at higher risk of birth defects.
Mr. Santorum, a Catholic abortion opponent, has said that he and his wife, Karen, didn't know the diagnosis until days after the birth of their daughter, who is known as Bella. Mr. Santorum said doctors told the couple to "let her go" because she never would be normal. But Mr. Santorum said that angered the couple, and they decided to focus on giving her the best life possible. He frequently calls Bella the "center" of his family's life.
She participates in activities with their other children and is present when they play the piano or board games, the Santorums have said.The description of the conversation with doctors couldn't be immediately verified.
Mr. Santorum's support for Bella is a draw for socially conservative voters. On the campaign trail, Mr. Santorum frequently speaks at churches and Christian schools to people such as David Broome. Mr. Broome, 56 years old, said he is religious and opposes abortion. Citing Mr. Santorum's daughter, "the one that he brought home sick," Mr. Broome said "his story to me is just real." He plans to vote for Mr. Santorum in Florida after voting for Mitt Romney in 2008. A Michigan Birth Injury Lawyer wants to protect families, too.
Mr. Santorum has stopped campaigning in Florida due to disappointing poll results and moved on to the Midwest, where he hopes to find greater traction. He has just opened an office in Nevada, one of the next states to vote on a Republican nominee, and his campaign bristles at the suggestion he may drop out the race. Rival Newt Gingrich has come close to suggesting Mr. Santorum would quit so conservatives may coalesce around Mr. Gingrich.