Neck operation before cord is cut saves baby
Saturday 18 September 1999
The operation, believed to be a first in Britain, was carried out during delivery, while the baby was half-in and half-out of the womb.
The baby, called Jaydon, was delivered by Caesarean section two weeks ago at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle upon Tyne. He had a blocked windpipe, and surgeons had to perform a tracheostomy - inserting a tube into the windpipe - to enable him to breathe, before cutting the umbilical cord.
Surgery has been carried out before on foetuses inside the womb during pregnancy, but not during delivery. If the cord had been cut and the baby had been completely removed from the womb before the operation was performed, he would have suffocated.
Professor Steven Robson, a consultant in foetal medicine, said that a team of surgeons and anaesthetists had to be assembled rapidly when the baby's mother, Joanne Vasey, went into labour eight weeks early. Scans taken earlier in the pregnancy had revealed lung abnormalities that suggested a blockage in the windpipe.
Professor Robson said: "It was certainly fun and games for a while trying to put the team together in a few hours. The procedure itself was not particularly difficult. The remarkable bit was in making the diagnosis before the birth, which allowed us to be ready."
The operation began with the mother's abdomen and womb being opened to reach the baby, as in any Caesarean. The baby's head and chest and one arm were lifted out, and doctors checked to see that his windpipe was indeed blocked.
While the baby was still attached to the umbilical cord, the surgeons performed the tracheostomy. They then cut the cord and completed the delivery. The operation lasted 45 minutes.
Jaydon weighed 2lb 13oz at birth and is expected to remain in hospital for three months.
Ms Vasey, a business management student aged 17, told a newspaper: "For a time we had thought that he might die before the birth or we might lose him during the delivery. I can hardly believe that he has come through it all. He's still got a long way to go, but he's a star."
- 1 Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 5 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
Russell Brand accuses Sean Hannity of terrorism after aggressive Israel-Gaza debate
Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
Justin Bieber posts Instagram photo of a crying Orlando Bloom after Ibiza fight 'over Miranda Kerr'
Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
Air Algerie AH5017 crash: Jet fell 30,000 feet in three minutes ‘due to violent storm’
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
- < Previous
- Next >
£180 - £250 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Financial Accountants - Key Banking...
£200 - £500 per day + competitive: Orgtel: I am currently working on a large p...
£18000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Computer Futures are currently...
£18000 - £27000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Sales - Trainee Recruitment Co...