• At just 7 weeks old, Mason (shown here with his mom, MaryJune) was rushed to Packard Children’s to treat biliary atresia, a rare liver disease that traps bile in the liver instead of flushing it through the gallbladder.
  • Pediatric surgeon Matias Bruzoni, MD, FACS, (left) and his colleagues at Packard Children’s reassured MaryJune and gave her 3-month-old son a bright, healthy future, for which she is deeply grateful.
  • “They will always hold a special place in our hearts,” says MaryJune of Dr. Bass (left) and Dr. Bruzoni (right), “I will thank them for what they did until the end of days.”


10 Years of Care

Krishna Farol-Schenck
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

In April 2010, Mason was rushed to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford at just 7 weeks old. He was born with a life-threatening, rare liver disease called biliary atresia, meaning Mason’s liver was trapping bile instead of flushing it out to his gallbladder. Mason’s family was terrified that they were going to lose him.

“I was overwhelmed,” MaryJune, Mason’s mom, recalls. “I had no idea what would be awaiting us at the NICU, and no idea of the journey we were about to embark upon.”

Fortunately, the doctors she met along the journey of Mason’s care eased her mind and acted promptly to save Mason’s life.

Dorsey Bass, MD, and Matias Bruzoni, MD, FACS, discovered baby Mason‘s liver was failing, and he needed a specialized surgical procedure—known as a Kasai procedure—to route the bile out of his liver and into his small intestines. It was Mason’s best chance for survival.

The doctors’ confidence reassured MaryJune that her little boy would be alright. “In our darkest days,” says MaryJune, “they were there to lift us up.” The expertise and care Mason received at Packard Children’s ensured the success of the surgery; Mason’s liver function was restored.

10 Years Later

Mason is an active fourth grader who loves playing sports, and he aspires to become an engineer when he grows up.

“He has a heart of gold and is full of never-ending energy!” MaryJune gushes.  

Mason continues to receive care at Packard Children’s. He takes medication and has regular appointments to check that his liver is functioning normally. His ability to live a healthier, happy life is because of the life-saving care Drs. Bass and Bruzoni and their teams provided.

“They will always hold a special place in our hearts,” says MaryJune, “I will thank them for what they did until the end of days.”

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