Unusual treatment saves baby at Seattle hospital

SEATTLE (AP) — A Seattle baby is home for Christmas thanks to an unusual treatment at Seattle Children's Hospital.

Doctors used an oxygen-rich liquid drug — not air — to inflate her collapsed lungs.

The Seattle Times reports doctors received an emergency exception from the Food and Drug Administration to use the drug perflubron, which is approved in Canada and Europe, but not the United States.

The baby, Tatiana Saiaana, was near death after she was born in August with severe respiratory distress. She showed little improvement after weeks on a first-line treatment with an artificial lung.

Dr. Kendra Smith suggested trying perfubron, a drug she had studied 15 years ago. It was made famous as an underwater breathing drug in the movie "The Abyss."