Teen Mom OG star Cheyenne Floyd has an adorable 1-year-old daughter named Ryder, who she welcomed into the world in April 2017. But shortly after the happy birth, Cheyenne's daughter was diagnosed with VLCAD, a scary medical issue.
It can be difficult to be a young mom, especially when you're child is diagnosed with a life-threatening condition. Sadly, Floyd dealt with this exact dilemma when Ryder was diagnosed with VLCAD, aka "Very-long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency," two days after her delivery, according to the Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
VLCAD "is a condition in which the body is unable to properly breakdown certain fats (called very long-chain fatty acids) into energy, particularly during periods without food (fasting)," according to (GARD). When a body can't turn fats into energy, a "metabolic crisis" can occur.
Symptoms of a metabolic crisis in a baby are "poor feeding, vomiting, lethargy, excessive sleepiness and irritability," according to the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority. Additionally, "if a metabolic crisis is not treated, breathing problems, seizures, coma, and sometimes death can occur."
Although this diagnosis is concerning, Floyd — and Ryder's dad, Cody Wharton — are handling it as best as they possibly can.
“I am going to make sure that Ryder stays healthy,” Floyd said, according to The Hollywood Gossip.
As for how Ryder stays healthy? Floyd gives the baby two doses of medication a day, and she requires close monitoring.
"When she was first born, she had to eat every two hours,” Floyd shared, according to Celebuzz.
Speaking of Ryder's diet, it's likely a bit complicated. Texas Department of State Health Services states about VLCAD diets:
Babies and young children with VLCAD should eat often to avoid low blood sugar or a Metabolic Crisis. They shouldn’t go without food for more than 4 to 6 hours. Some babies may need to eat even more often. Children with VLCAD should have a starchy snack (such as bread, cereal, and rice) before bed and another during the night. They need another snack first thing in the morning. Raw cornstarch mixed with water, milk, or other drink is a good source of longlasting energy.
Floyd also is aware that she didn't do anything to cause Ryder's condition. “It doesn’t go away, it’s genetic. It’s not like I did anything wrong," she explained, according to Celebuzz.
In a positive twist, Floyd hopes to use her platform on Teen Mom OG as a means to educate people about VLCAD. The mom-of-one said as much in her casting announcement, writing on Instagram:
We are excited to be joining MTV Teen Mom OG! Although I was not a teen parent, I am a young parent and hope that my story and our experiences help other families. Thank you @TeenMom for giving us a platform to bring awareness to @thatsRyderK’s rare genetic condition VLCAD & showing how Co-Parenting can be done harmony. Proud of us @corywharton_ig!"
Here's to Floyd and Wharton's efforts to raise awareness about this rare condition. Hopefully, more resources will be allocated to VLCAD due to their outreach.