Liver transplant mum praises team who cared for baby born prematurely

A Nottingham mum has praised staff on the Neonatal Unit at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust (NUH) after they cared for her son for more than a month after he was born prematurely.

Emma Croghan from Arnold has thanked the team for their outstanding medical care after they cared for son Theo, who was born weighing just 3lbs 10oz, and spent 44 days on the neonatal unit at QMC in August this year.

The 33-year-old said: “We went to visit the unit before he was born in preparation for what was ahead and although it was an alien to us seeing all the wires and systems that were going to be used, when Theo was born it did help us understand the next steps would be.”

Little Theo was born at just 31 weeks old, and was a complex birth following an earlier problem with Emma’s liver. The mum of two was born with biliary atresia, which meant her bile ducts did not work properly, and she suffered a damaging build-up of bile in her liver. At seven years old she had a liver transplant.

Emma added: “The team were lovely. They were very in control of the situation but allowed us to parent as much as possible in the situation. They were genuine people who really cared not just about Theo but about us his family.

“I have had two babies in Neonatal care in two different hospitals and I would come back here every time should I ever need to, although I hope I don’t! I cannot thank the nurses at the neonatal unit enough for the care me, my son and my family received. They made it extremely easy for us to bring Theo’s little brother William onto the ward. They were very lovely and extremely supportive on the days when it all got too much and you are crying in the coffee room.”

Dr Stephen Wardle, Consultant Neonatologist at Nottingham University Hospitals, said: “The main risks of having had a liver transplant are that the immunosuppressant drugs used to treat patients could affect the baby’s growth and lead to a small baby who might be born early. Emma has had a lot of experience of hospital care because of her own medical care, which makes her kind words particularly special. 

“We try hard on the neonatal unit to provide care for the whole family and involve parents with the care of their baby and it is pleasing to hear that Emma felt that we achieved this and that they all felt cared for.”

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