One of Britain’s most premature babies who was born at 24 weeks and survived after being covered in BUBBLE WRAP has defied the odds to reach her original due date.
Mum Lucy-Marie Smith, 18, was just six months into her pregnancy when she was rushed to hospital after she started getting stomach pains.
She was told she wasn’t in labour and sent home to have a bath but went back to hospital after she started bleeding.
Lucy-Marie was again told she wasn’t in labour but suddenly felt the urge to push and her daughter Sophia-Rose was born at just 24 weeks at 2am on May 20.
The tiny tot weighed just 1lb 3oz – less than a bag of sugar – and was whisked straight to intensive care, where she was put on a ventilator to help her breathe.
She was also wrapped from head to toe in bubble wrap and placed in an incubator to try and keep her warm.
Doctors warned the family it was touch-and-go after she developed a bleed on the brain and have given her just a 20 per cent chance of surviving.
Single mum Lucy has been told that Sophia-Rose has cerebral palsy, a condition that affects muscle control and movement, in the left hand side of her body.
But Sophia-Rose, who now weighs a healthy 6lbs 10oz, has battled against the odds and yesterday reached her due date and is expected to go home by the end of the month.
Lucy, of Broxtowe, Notts., said: “The past four months have been a very rocky road.
“It’s always two steps forward and 10 steps back in intensive care, but Sophia’s progress has been really good. It took us a while to get this far but she is excelling in all areas.
“It feels really weird that I was supposed to be due today. I’ve been wondering how big my belly would have been.”
Lucy, who was studying childcare when she got pregnant, added: “She’s started smiling and she’s very playful as well.
“We had our first play session a week ago and she was wide awake, smiling and playing with her doll.
“I feel amazing that my daughter was blessed. As a younger mother people had a few doubts, but I’ve supported her every step and the future will bring more happiness with my little miracle baby.”
Recalling Sophia-Rose’s birth, Lucy said: “I went to hospital and they checked me over but they said I wasn’t in labour and sent me home.
“They told me to have a soothing bath so that’s exactly what I did. Then I sat on the bed to watch a film, but suddenly I started bleeding.”
Her mum Dawn Smith, 46, then took her back to City Hospital where she was checked over again and admitted to a ward.
Lucy added: “I was on my own and I just started pushing. By the time the midwife had come back in Sophia-Rose had almost been born.
“She was delivered and then about 20 people rushed into the room and put her into a special bed.
“I didn’t know whether she would survive, she was rushed straight to intensive care.
“When we were first allowed to see her it was about six hours later and you couldn’t see any of her because she was completely covered by bubble wrap, even over her head.
“It was to try and raise her temperature because she was still supposed to be in the womb. It probably saved her life.
“She was born still inside her amniotic sac, which is meant to be lucky, and she’s certainly needed that luck.
“I turned 24 weeks on the night she was born, which was incredibly lucky because they told me no babies survive if they are born at 23 weeks.
“They have given her a 20 per cent chance of surviving but we think she is making great progress and can’t see her going downhill so we are keeping our fingers crossed.
“She is on a ventilator that means she doesn’t have to do any breathing for herself so she can rest as much as possible but she is very bright and alert.
“She was due on September 9. But we’re hoping we might be able to bring her home by Christmas.
“She’s got a battle on her hands but she is a true fighter, she’s such a little trooper.”