A new mum and her family have paid a heart-warming tribute to the hospital team which saved her life after she needed emergency surgery following the birth of her daughter.
Samantha Jennings brought little Eloise Hoggett into the world at Sunderland Royal Hospital on September 27 last year.
But Samantha was cut during labour, which is where the problems began.
“Eloise was delivered OK but I was told I had to have an episiotomy and started bleeding,” said Samantha, 31, of High Barnes.
“I only held her for a couple of seconds and that’s when she went a little bit floppy but she just required some assistance breathing.
“I continued to bleed though which is when the doctors became concerned.”
Samantha had to be rushed into theatre because of further complications.
“I suffered a postpartum haemorrhage and they gave me three different types of drugs to try and stop the bleeding.
“The drugs were unsuccessful and a decision was made that a hysterectomy was necessary.”
Following seven-hour surgery, in which she lost between 12 and 18 pints of blood, Samantha, who works as an administration assistant for an IT company, was put on the Royal’s Integrated Critical Care Unit (ICCU), before going back to the maternity ward.
“I know now that it was touch and go at one point,” she said.
“In all there were about 30 different people from the hospital involved and I just want to say a massive thank you to all of them.
“If not for them, I would not be here to see my little girl grow up.
“I’m just glad to be alive.”
Samantha’s partner and Eloise’s dad Shaun, 33, a project supervisor in the construction industry, and her sister Lee 35 both signed up as blood donors following the traumatic and emotional experience which they suffered.
The family have also now passed on a private donation of £1,000 to the Royal’s Obstetric Research Fund.
“As well as thanking the hospital team for what they did, we want to encourage as many people as possible to become blood donors,” added Samantha.
“You might not realise how important it is until you need it.
“We’re all absolutely fine now and able to get on with life. I know how lucky I am.”
Kim Hinshaw, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at City Hospitals Sunderland said: “We are very grateful for the generous donation from Samantha and her family which will be used to support the clinical research we undertake in labour and pregnancy care, here at Sunderland.
“Samantha has made a full recovery and can now really enjoy her new baby.”