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My son, Sam, was born on Friday 19th March 2004 at 1:45am. He was born with a Gastroschisis, which means his intestines were on the outside of his body. He was immediately put on a naso-gastric tube to empty the contents of his stomach and his bowel was wrapped in surgical cling film to prevent infection. At 04:30 the surgeon started manipulating the bowel to feed it back inside. He got most of it back, but had to put Sam under a general anesthetic to put the rest in.

Sam soon after being born
with his Gastroschisis wrapped in surgical film

Sam then went to intensive care and was on an intubator until Sunday, he was transfered out of intensive care on Monday 22nd to the childrens ward. We then spent 5 weeks waiting for his gut to start working. He was being fed TPN (Total Parental Nutrition) intravenously. They tried to slowly introduce milk feeds, starting on 2 mls every 3 hours and every now and again raising it by a ml or so, but each time they increased, Sam would throw up lots and they would go back to nil by mouth.

Post operation
Recovering with some friends

On 24th April he had got up to about 22 mls of milk when his IV line fell out. It was the weekend so they put in a temporary cannula to give him fluid, to put a replacement IV line in on Monday. On the Monday a doctor tried to put a new line in, but his veins wouldn't take it so they decided (with a little persuasion from me) to attempt to up his feeds more rapidly. If it didn't work they were going to have another attempt at putting a line in on Tuesday. Luckily he took the feeds really well and was up to full feeds Wednesday morning and at lunchtime I put him to the breast. He immediately knew what to do.

This tastes nice!

They then monitored him to make sure he continued to take from the breast and we came home Thursday (29th April) night. We took him back to Addenbrookes for a check up when he was 3 months old. He is now a healthy happy baby who is crawling and in to everything, to meet him you wouldn't know what he had been through at the start of his life. He is truely wonderful and I am so proud of him.

Sam Today