Woman With Broken Neck Delivers Baby - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Woman With Broken Neck Delivers Baby

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We've all heard stories about extreme challenges women face during pregnancy. One new mom delivered her baby with a broken neck.

Before she could hold her baby girl, Tanja Rose held her breath and pulled off something doctors say had never been done before - deliver a baby with a broken neck.

"It's funny, as we started looking around and looking on the internet, we realized we've never heard of this before in the whole United States that this has ever happened," Tanja said.

Tanja broke her neck in a car accident just before Christmas. She was seven months pregnant when a halo had to be bolted into her head.

"There are two screws that go into the skull in the back and it holds the bones absolutely still," Tanja said.

Remaining perfectly still during contractions makes for a tricky delivery.

"I had no choice, she was coming," she said.

Tanja delivered her first daughter naturally, with no drugs. But after careful consideration and a few tears, doctors determined an epidural was her best bet this time around, because her baby was breach.

"Actually she is going to be able to push from a medical point of view. There is no contra-indication to her using force," Dr. Laurie Greenberg of Scripps Memorial Hospital said. "We just really wanted to avoid the C-section, because of the recovery afterwards."

Tanja still can't decide which is worse, not showering for the past seven weeks or being unable to look her newborn baby in the eye.

"I can't really see her that well. It's kind of funny, after she came out they had to hold her way up high for me because this is about where my vision is," she said.

Take our word for it, she's beautiful, and at 7 pounds, 5 ounces, she just happens to weigh the same as the heavenly-looking halo mounted on top of her mom.

"It must have been a very funny sight, in the middle of the night my husband is holding on leg and the nurse is holding the other and I'm lying there in a halo, pushing," Tanja said.

As for Tanja's broken neck, she's headed toward a full recovery. The halo comes off in the next three to five weeks.

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