Kira and Jad describe their son Bailey’s complicated birth:
A complicated birth
“Bailey’s birth was difficult from the start and Kira was induced a week early because she had excess fluid which is normally related to diabetes. Kira doesn’t suffer from it though so they decided to keep a close eye on her instead.
She also had an infection and the midwives thought Bailey might have had meningitis too. She wasn’t able to push and was rushed into theatre for an emergency caesarean with doctors and nurses surrounding her” says Jad.
“When Bailey was born, he didn’t cry so we knew something was wrong. He was blue and had the umbilical cord wrapped round his neck. He also had shoulder dystocia which meant his shoulders had been stuck. The first time I saw him, he was battered and bruised” Jad remembers.
“He was monitored for the first four hours to check for signs of brain damage. We were told he would be put into a cooling chamber to reduce any further harm if the scans did show signs of brain damage. It was traumatic and I remember just trying to take it all in as Kira was still downstairs in recovery. Luckily, Bailey didn’t need to be cooled but he spent the first week of his life in a high dependency unit.”
Now a healthy child
“Despite really going through the wars when he was born, Bailey has made a full recovery and is now as good as gold. He loves his baby cousin so we think he’ll be just fine with a little brother or sister as Kira is pregnant again!”
“We did have to go back to the hospital for three months to check his arm and he had to have physio. Whilst Bailey is okay now, the emotional impact of his birth was huge. He is our first child and it was a scary time.”
Giving something back
Jad decided to run the London Marathon to raise money for Sparks. He explains why, “If it wasn’t for the amount of research that is done, Bailey might not have been cared for in the way he was and may not be the healthy, happy boy he is today. Sparks provide funding into research like cooling babies and hopefully my fundraising can help other children like Bailey.”
How Sparks is helping
Professor Marianne Thoresen was part of a research group that developed the first effective treatment against brain injury in infants – cooling to 33.5˚C for 72 hours. Thanks to this technique and the research already funded by Sparks, the lives of hundreds of babies have already been saved.
Despite their achievements, Professor Thoresen and her team think they can do better. Their goal is to test a new technique of administering xenon gas during the cooling treatment.
They hope to develop safe and affordable treatment that helps babies to survive with less brain injury. By improving the effectiveness of this already successful treatment, this project will help to prevent even more brain injuries at birth.