Premature Baby Girl Weighed 1 Pound at Birth and Survived Thanks to People Donating Blood

The father of a healthy baby girl who was born three months early has made his first blood donation in gratitude after saving his daughter’s life with a blood transfusion.

Lottie, daughter of Chris and Louise Watson, was born three months early after a lack of blood flow and loss of amniotic fluid led to premature labour. He was born at 1lb 4oz and was treated for 13 weeks at Wishaw General Hospital, during which time his weight dropped to just 1lb 1oz.

Because she was born prematurely, Lottie needed five blood transfusions to help her grow again. His father Chris said “We knew he needed a blood transfusion before the numbers came back from the labs. His color was completely drained.”

“He was like a whole new baby after his blood transfusion”.

Thanks to his treatment, Lottie began to grow rapidly. “Lottie now weighs 9lb 4oz and has recently started to wean off solid food” her dad said. Her parents are now looking forward to their first Christmas with their baby girl and her older brother.

Five months after Lottie was born, Chris made his first blood donation

The father expressed his gratitude to the blood donors who made Lottie’s treatment possible. She said she vowed to start donating blood herself when she saw how much of a difference blood donations made to her daughter.

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He said “I want to give back because if it wasn’t for the kindness of strangers who gave their time and blood, I wouldn’t have my little girl”.

Blood for newborns need to be specially tested for cytomegalovirus (CMV), which is a mild virus that stays in the body for the rest of one’s life. Donate blood for newborn babies or anyone with a weakened immune system should not contain antibodies for CMV. As 50-60% of adults in the UK developed the virus, this factor puts a huge limit on the blood that can be given for premature babies like Lottie.

Advances in medicine continue to increase the chances of premature babies surviving

While Lottie was born just three months premature, babies from 22 weeks gestation live longer. A study in 2022 found nearly four out of five babies born prematurely between 22 and 28 weeks’ gestation survived to be discharged from the hospital. This found that from 2013 to 2018, with babies born between 22 and 28 weeks’ gestation, “survival to discharge occurred at 78.3% and was significantly improved compared to the previous rate of 76.0% among babies born in 2008-2012”.

In the decade to 2019 alone, the survival rate for extremely premature babies doubledmotivation new guide from the British Association of Perinatal Medicine (BAPM) which allows doctors to intervene to save premature babies from 22 weeks gestation. The previous clinical guidelinesdeveloped in 2008, set the standard that babies born before 23 weeks’ gestation should not be resuscitated.

Research published in November 2023 by academics at the University of Leicester and Imperial College London found the number of babies born at 22 weeks’ gestation surviving to hospital discharge tripled between 2018-19, before the introduction of the BAPM guideline, and 2020-21, after the introduction of the BAPM guideline.

Spokesperson for Right To Life UK, Catherine Robinson, said, “Baby Lottie’s father, Chris, should be delighted that his daughter is alive and well to spend Christmas with her family. This story shows how how powerful is the gift of life, because Chris donated his own blood to help other people”.

LifeNews Note: Republished with permission from Right to Life UK.

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