Goldenhar syndrome is a rare congenital condition affecting one in every 3,000-5,000 births. According to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), a facility that diagnoses and treats individuals with Goldenhar syndrome, the condition is characterized by hemifacial microsomia. Hemifacial microsomia “means the jaw and cheekbones on one side of the face are underdeveloped. This underdevelopment, along with eye and ear anomalies, leads to distinctive facial features for children with Goldenhar syndrome.”
Andrew Logsdon’s amazing daughter, Abby, has Goldenhar syndrome. In a recent update on Abby’s fundraising page, Help Abby Grow, Kristin describes how others react to Abby’s condition Many children express confusion and adults show pity. Kristin, however, reflects on her daughter’s differences much differently by comparing Abby to a four-leaf clover: “Did you know that a 4 leaf clover is actually a genetic mutation of the plant? Abby truly is our 4 leaf clover and we are so very lucky that she is in our lives.”
Goldenhar syndrome also affects Ed & Tanya Tiger and their nearly five-month-old daughter, Kristin, too. Baby Kristin’s Facial Reconstruction includes a video explaining their family’s experiences with the condition. Tanya explains how Goldenhar syndrome impacts Kristin’s eating because “teeth don’t form properly or don’t form at all and, even if they do form, they’re usually unhealthy” and a shortened tongue and narrow nasal airways cause breathing difficulties.
Like any parents, the Logsdons and Tigers want to give their daughters the best chances for lifetimes of health and happiness. In spite of the obstacles created by Goldenhar syndrome, they bravely started fundraising pages to gather emotional and financial support during their families’ journeys. Caring parents, hundreds of encouraging comments, and thousands of dollars raised prove both Abby and Kristin have bright futures ahead of them.
Update: Fort Wayne Homepage featured Abby’s story this week! You can watch her in news segment here.