Children's Hospital Colorado

Marshall and Malia: Umbilical Hernia Surgery for Siblings

During a routine visit to his pediatrician, 9-year-old Marshall complained of some pain in his abdomen.  Thinking it could be something serious, his doctor immediately referred him to Children’s Hospital Colorado. The family visited our North Campus location in Broomfield, just a short drive from their home in Westminster.

After being examined at Children’s Colorado, the family learned that Marshall had an umbilical hernia and would need surgery to repair it. Marshall’s mom, Mandy, couldn’t believe it when she walked in the room and saw an old friend. Marshall’s pediatric surgeon, Jonathan Roach, MD, was a former coworker of Mandy’s in the ICU where she worked as a nurse. If that wasn’t a big enough coincidence, Dr. Roach’s lead nurse was also a former colleague of Mandy’s. Mandy and her husband, Medford, immediately felt at ease and confident their child was in the best hands.

The coincidences didn’t stop there. Only one year later, Marshall’s sister, Malia, would also need surgery for an umbilical hernia. Malia’s case, however, was known about since birth and being monitored – sometimes umbilical hernias can resolve on their own. By the time Malia was 7 years old and became active in gymnastics, the hernia started to bother her. Doctors decided that the hernia didn’t look like it would resolve on its own and it was time for surgery.

Marshall’s surgery and recovery went so smoothly that when Malia needed the same surgery, their parents didn’t think twice about scheduling it with Dr. Roach. This time around, they met Dr. Roach at the North Campus’ new location, complete with new facilities like a new urgent care, pharmacy, laboratory services and expanded operating and recovery rooms.

Mandy said the new location was very welcoming and the waiting rooms were comfortable. The fact that our surgeons specialize in treating kids and that we see a high number of children for hernias also put Mandy and Medford at ease. Mandy said the process was quick – they checked in at 6:30 a.m. for Malia’s surgery and were back home by 9:30 a.m. The surgery was so effective, they didn’t even need a follow-up appointment with Dr. Roach.

Now Mandy and Medford can joke, “no more kids, no more surgeries,” they say with a laugh. And even though Dr. Roach didn’t give them a 2-for-1 discount, they say they will come back to Children’s Colorado every time – even though they’re hoping this was the last time they’ll see Dr. Roach in a professional capacity.