Jimmy Kimmel has opened up about the terrifying ordeal he went through recently with the birth of his fourth child, who had to undergo a series of surgeries after doctors determined a problem with his heart. He talked about the incident on his talk show this week.

Jimmy Kimmel and Molly McNearney at the Vanity Fair Oscars PartyJimmy Kimmel and Molly McNearney at the Vanity Fair Oscars Party

It should have been the happiest moment of their year, but Jimmy Kimmel and his wife Molly McNearney had the fright of their lives just hours after welcoming their second child as a couple into the world. The talk show host choked back tears as he explained the situation to his audience on 'Jimmy Kimmel Live' yesterday (May 1st 2017).

He revealed that there didn't seem to be anything wrong with William 'Billy' John Kimmel immediately after his birth on April 21st 2017, and that it was only the shrewd eye of a nurse at Cedars-Sinai Hospital that revealed otherwise hours later. 'It was an easy delivery, six pushes and he was out', he said. 'He appeared to be a normal healthy baby until about three hours after he was born.'

'[The nurse] was checking him out and heard a murmur in his heart, which is common with newborn babies, but she also noticed he was a bit purple which is not common', he continued. 'My wife and I assumed it would be nothing - our daughter [2-year-old Jane] had a heart murmur too - and we didn't notice that he wasn't the colour he was supposed to be.' 

After taking the baby to be examined by another nurse on the neo-natal ICU ward, doctors were called who determined Billy 'wasn't getting enough oxygen into his blood' which Jimmy took to mean there was a problem with either his heart or his lungs, the latter of which was potentially a lot less serious. Needless to say, it turned out to be a congenital heart defect called Tetralogy of Fallot with pulmonary atresia; a disease characterised by a blocked pulmonary valve and a hole in the heart. 

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Jimmy and Molly subsequently took Billy to Children's Hospital Los Angeles to be fixed up by a world-renowned surgeon in a successful three-hour operation, but unfortunately that's not the end of their trauma. 'He'll have to have another open-heart surgery in three to six months to close those holes but they want to wait until he's bigger', Jimmy explained. 'And then he'll have a third, hopefully non-invasive, procedure sometime maybe in his early teens to replace the valve he has now.'

Still, things are obviously going well enough that Jimmy can still crack jokes. Sharing an adorable picture of his 10-day-old son, he quipped: 'Poor kid, not only did he get a bad heart, he got my face.'