The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is world-renowned for developing innovative new surgical procedures to help save babies’ lives before they are born.

Doctors at the hospital recently performed heart surgery on a 21-week unborn baby while he was still in his mother’s womb, and removed a tumor that almost killed him, CBS 3 in Philadelphia reports.

“His heart at the time of surgery was the size of a peanut. The size of the tumor was three-times the size of the heart,” surgeon Dr. Jack Rychik told the news station. “Had we waited an additional day, we probably would have been too late.”

Rychik and his team performed the fetal heart surgery in October, and baby Juan was born on Dec. 11. Earlier this month, doctors declared him well enough to go home, according to the report.

Parents Cecilia Cella and Pablo Paladino traveled all the way from Uruguay in South America to give their unborn son a chance at life.

Cella said it was during her five-month ultrasound scan that her doctor detected the tumor on Juan’s heart. Her doctor is friends with Dr. Rychik in Philadelphia and sent the images of Juan’s heart to him, the family said.

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