Josh Ryan Leader’s Story
Born April 10th 2008 at 26 weeks and 3 days.
Our story begins when I was 23 weeks pregnant and was told I had Pre-eclampsia. At the time I didn’t realise what it was all about and the dangers that I faced – I was actually on holiday down in Cornwall. I spent the next couple of weeks in and out of hospital at Durham before being transferred to the RVI in Newcastle. I was told my baby would come sooner rather than later as I had too many complications. I managed to get to 26 weeks and 3 days before our baby boy was born by an emergency c-section on April the 10th 2008 at 14.31pm, weighing 1lb 6oz. I only saw our son briefly as he was whisked away to Special Care (S.C.B.U) Ward 35 in an incubator.
I was told not to build my hopes up as our son was born so prematurely. When Josh made an appearance into the world we endured many ups and downs. Along the way we were also told that Josh’s duct near his heart wasn’t closing and medical treatment didn’t agree with him. The only option was to send him to the Freeman Hospital for an operation (PDA ligation) on Bank Holiday Monday (26th May 2008). This came as a complete shock but we were both prepared for this. At first I didn’t realise that this was a common operation but the staff explained it to us and I was quite happy to send him. He needed it doing as he couldn’t come off the ventilator. Josh had quite a few infections which delayed him from going for the operation.
It took Josh a week to recover and be transferred to CPAP and then weaned to low flow oxygen. Along the way Josh had 5 blood and 1 platelet transfusions but finally after 100 days he was transferred to our local hospital where he spent another 18 days. On August the 6th 2008 (age 118 days) Josh finally came home. Without the doctors and nurses both at the RVI and Freeman our son wouldn’t have survived.