Kid Captain: Ayden Gendreau

IOWA CITY, Iowa — Ayden Gendreau was air lifted to University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital within the first 24 hours of his birth after doctors in a local hospital discovered he had been born with a heart defect. The next day, Ayden was diagnosed with VACTERL syndrome, a disorder that can affect many body systems: vertebral defects, anal atresia, cardiac defects, trachea-esophageal fistula, renal anomalies, and limb abnormalities. Ayden experienced a spinal defect, heart defect, and anal defect.

Ayden has had several surgeries, many on his back to help correct his spine. When he was 6 years old, he received MAGEC rods along his back that were able to grow along with him with the use of magnets that are controlled by his doctor.

Read Ayden’s story here.