London, Apr 3 (ANI): Little Olivia Norton, now six months, was born totally white as she had such a negligible count of haemoglobin that it could not officially be classified as 'blood'.
Norton, who has been hailed a miracle by doctors, was given less than two hours to live but survived thanks to emergency transfusions, which transformed her into a glowing healthy pink colour.
Mother Louise Bearman, 31, a barrister's clerk, revealed about her disbelief at giving birth to a "ghost white" baby whose condition was so rare that she will now feature in medical text books.
"Olivia was my first baby, so I didn't really know what to expect - but I certainly didn't think she'd be that colour," the Telegraph quoted her as saying.
"I'll never forget what the doctors notes said - 'white and floppy'. There were some complications before the birth, which was incredibly scarry. Then when Olivia came out so white we didn't know what was going on.
"It was such a relief when the doctors explained what was happening, and it was quite amazing when they put the blood in her and she slowly turned this amazing pink colour. She's such a lovely baby, it means everything having her at home now."
Bearman and her greengrocer partner Paul Norton, 36, of Witham, Essex, first observed that something was wrong when they didn't feel Olivia kicking for three days.
They went to Broomfield Hospital, in Chelmsford, and when nurses failed to see any movement after a 15-minute scan, doctors ordered an emergency caesarean.
Olivia was born six weeks early at 8.20pm on Saturday September 10, weighing 5lbs 3oz with her heartbeat dipping severely low.
Haemoglobin is the protein that gives blood its characteristic red colour and ability to carry oxygen around the body.
When Olivia was born she had haemoglobin levels of only three out of a normal level of 18, which implied that the plasma in her blood could not be classified as proper blood.
The newborn was rushed to the hospital's special care baby unit where she was monitored for two weeks and had her strength and colour restored with two blood transfusions.
Neonatal nurse Sharon Pilgrim, on Monday asserted that in 20 years in the job she had never heard of such low haemoglobin levels.
"It was a miracle she survived. She was incredibly pale when born and had difficulties breathing. There was no sign of blood loss prior to the caesarean or during the operation," Pilgrim said.
"It was only when we carried out further tests on Louise that we discovered the baby had lost blood directly into her mum's blood circulation."
"The hospital staff were amazing and called Olivia the 'miracle baby' and said if I hadn't come in she would not have survived. Doctors still don't know why it happened, it is one of those freak things," Louise added. (ANI)
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