A mother who went into labour at just 22 weeks has revealed her joy today after her son won his desperate fight for life.
Ruth Nash, 34, was pregnant with twins when her waters broke 18 weeks early. She was told her babies had a zero chance of survival and soon after lost her daughter Matilda.
However, the mother from the Isle of Wight managed to delay giving birth to her son Stanley for three weeks by lying with her feet elevated in a hospital bed. Her precious son was born at just over 24weeks weighing a tiny 1lb.
In the palm of your hand: Stanley needed an operation to fix a hole in his heart
Survivor: Stanley Nash with mother Ruth and father Graham after they brought him home from hospital. Sadly Stanley’s twin sister did not survive her premature birth
Mrs Nash said: ‘I wanted to do whatever I could to become I mum. I would try anything. So I got into the bed, lay down, and didn’t move.
‘I was told it was almost certain that I
was going to lose him. I think if I hadn’t done that I would not have
the beautiful baby that I have today.’
The mother gave birth to Matilda at St Mary’s Hospital in the Isle of Wight, after staying still for two weeks but she only survived only 19 hours.
Ruth was transferred in her bed by ferry to Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth where there is a specialist neo-natal unit and seven days later Standley was born.
Doctors rushed Stanley, who weighed less than a bag of sugar out of the maternity ward and put him straight onto a ventilator.
Surgeons performed several operations on Stanley – fixing a hole in his heart and correcting ROP – an eye condition which can cause babies to go blind.
It meant Ruth and husband Graham, 40,
from Ryde, Isle of Wight, were unable to hug their newborn for the first
five weeks of his life.
But Stanley survived against the odds and at six months old is showing no ill-effects of his dramatic arrival into the world.
Precious: Ruth had to wait five weeks before she could hug her son
New life: Stanley at just a day old at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth
Although Stanley weighed just 1lb at birth amazingly he is not the lightest baby to have survived – that record goes to Rumaisa Rahman who was born in the U.S weighing 8.4oz.
The lightest baby to survive in the UK was Marian Chapman who weighed just 10oz when she was born in 1938. The second lightest was Ruby Angel Dunn who was born weighing 12.5oz in 2007.
Mrs Nash said: ‘When I finally got to hold him it was the best moment of my life.
‘I know I have lost a child but I feel like the luckiest woman in the world at the moment.’
Mr Nash added: ‘It was the most stressful three weeks we have ever experienced and the last few months have also been tough.
‘It may have been hell getting here but we are so happy to have come through it all with a healthy, beautiful boy.’
Consultant obstetrician Nick Kenney, who treated Ruth at St Mary’s, said: ‘Survival below 24 weeks is very rare.
‘I have nothing but admiration for their strength and courage, never giving up hope.
‘Perhaps the strongest character was young Stanley himself.’