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Dystonia Patient Celebrates Child’s First Birthday

Medical experts reflect on the high risk pregnancy

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Stamford, CT | Added on July 25, 2013 At 11:01 PM

A miracle child celebrated his first birthday at the Tully Health Center in Stamford on Wednesday.  

Doctors, nurses, friends and family joined a former Stamford Hospital maternity patient to celebrate the first birthday of her first child. 

Reenu Zwolinkis has a condition called severe dystonia, a neurological disorder that has left her unable to walk, speak and live independently. With the help of medical professionals,   Reenu was able to carry out a high risk pregnancy into full term without any complications, and safely delivered her healthy baby boy Aiden a year ago on July 19th. 

"Every day is something new," said Reenu's husband Brian. "We're learning everyday. He's learning and it's just amazing." 

Physicians tell us they were concerned Reenu's 80 pound fragile frame would also contribute to a very painful pregnancy.  

"Everybody addressed her medical issues," said Tracy Shevell. "How to deal with them, and then once we were able to deal with them, we made a plan and it effected a very good outcome for everybody."

"Even at a young age, I realize we place limits on people," said Reenu's brother Divyam Shrivastava. "They're the limitations we put on other people. And that was the beautiful thing about my sister. She did not care about what other people thought what she could do or not."

Reenu left India for the United States after high school, and met her future husband, Brian, while studying at Queens College to be a graphic designer.  

"We used to meet in the computer lab and type back and forth and then we started communicating," said Reenu's husband.


Physicians say they formed a friendship with Reenu by learning to communicate through a computer. 

"After a couple visits it almost became something that wasn't even there," said Shevell. "You looked at her and you waited to hear the computer speak but you knew it was coming from her."


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