Pre-thinking

The new parents thought their baby boy was healthy — until at 10 days old, they discovered Mario had experienced a prenatal stroke. He was not able to control the left side of his body. Questions that they had included: Would he be “normal?” Could he live a full life?

This is the poignant story of parents facing their fears — and how they turned them around. As you watch think about how you might react to this situation if it occurred to you or someone you knew.

Why you should listen

When Roberto D’Angelo and Francesca Fedeli’s son, Mario, was just 10 days old, he was diagnosed as having had a perinatal stroke in the right side of his brain, which left him unable to move the left side of his body. Through mirror neuron rehabilitation, Mario is now 3 years old and has greatly improved motion.

Together, as a family, they’re promoting the awareness of this story as motivational speakers at events like TED Global 2013, Ciudad de las Ideas 2013, Doctors 2.0 2014 and many others. They’re proud organizers of the first TEDMED live streaming 2014 and Med Hackathon in Italy, aimed to regroup the leading experts on Medicine and Innovation. Roberto is the Office 365 Lead at Microsoft Italy, driving business and marketing strategy for the software while also working on improving Microsoft’s Public Cloud. Francesca currently focuses her marketing expertise in the Fightthestroke.org project. She also acts as a member of the Board of Directors of the International Alliance for Pediatric Stroke, and became an Eisenhower Fellow in 2014.

Who are they

The tech-savvy couple founded FightTheStroke.org to gather and share the experiences of families who have been affected by all types of infant and childhood strokes. The social movement wants to open up a dialogue about the devastating effects of this traumatic event, advocating for young stroke survivors and using technology and open medicine as enablers for their better future. Together, as a family, they’re promoting the awareness of this story as motivational speakers at events like TED Global 2013, Ciudad de las Ideas 2013, Doctors 2.0 2014 and many others. They’re proud organizers of the first TEDMED live streaming 2014 and Med Hackathon in Italy, aimed to regroup the leading experts on Medicine and Innovation. Roberto is the Office 365 Lead at Microsoft Italy, driving business and marketing strategy for the software while also working on improving Microsoft’s Public Cloud. Francesca currently focuses her marketing expertise in the Fightthestroke.org project. She also acts as a member of the Board of Directors of the International Alliance for Pediatric Stroke, and became an Eisenhower Fellow in 2014.

Discussion Questions

  1. What did the parents discover after 10 days of their baby’s birth?
  2. What part of Mario’s brain was damaged? What does this mean for further development?
  3. What happened as a result of mirror neuron practice?
  4. What is the speakers’ message about gratefulness and why do they think so? Would you agree or disagree if you were in their shoes, why or why not?

 

Our Baby’s Illness: A Life Lesson with Roberto D’Angelo and Francesca Fedeli

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