A FAMILY have praised hospital staff after finally being reunited with their ‘miracle baby’.

Travis Rogers, was born at just 24 weeks and weighed only 730g. He was not expected to live and was so fragile that his parents were unable to hold him for almost a month after he was born.

He spent the first three months of his life in intensive care and had to be revived almost daily.

Mum Angie Hamilton from Cannix Close in Stevenage, said: “I was at home and had no pains at all but I had the feeling that I was going to give birth.

“I called an ambulance but Lister Hospital does not have the facilities for babies less than 28 weeks so I was transferred to the Luton and Dunstable.

“I was given some drugs to stop the labour but it only stopped it until the following day. The staff were really kind but one of the doctors told me his chances of survival were very slim and her face said it all.

“It all happened extremely quickly but the doctors had an incubator ready and a plastic bag which he was put into protect his skin as it wasn’t developed properly.

“I had just a moment to look at him and then he was taken away. It was awful.

“One of the doctors turned around to me after I had given birth and said ‘this is just the beginning’. I now know what he meant.”

Travis had no physical problems when he was born, although he couldn’t move on this own and had to be ventilated. But he then developed problems with his bowel and the staff suspected necrotising enterocolitis, a deadly disease for premature babies which often leaves them needing a transplant if they survive.

Angie, 40, continued: “He then had to have two major operations. During a second operation there was so much damage that he had to have his intestines removed. We were told if his intestines didn’t grow he would then have to have a transplant.

“But in early May, when Travis developed an infection and had to be operated on again, surgeons found that his intestines had grown back.

“The surgeon was in complete shock considering the previous operation it had been eaten away.

“Travis was also born with a large hole in the heart, he could not receive the drug to cure this due to his bowel condition, so instead he was placed on a waiting list to be operated on at Great Ormond Street. However we learnt that Travis also healed his own heart before even being given a date.”

The family spent seven months apart due to the daily hospital trips and stays overnight.

Angie said: “It was a real balancing act. He spent so long in special care that they used to call him the old man!”

Travis is now seven months old and weighs 9lb 5oz. Apart from being small, he has suffered no disabilities.

Dr Gabi Noble-Jamieson, a leading consultant with Addenbrooke’s hospital, said: “Travis had a very difficult start to life, he was born prematurely, required multiple operations for bowel problems and needed intravenous feeding for a long time. We are delighted that he has recovered from all these serious complications and is now well, and enjoys family life.”

Angie added: “We are so grateful to everyone involved in keeping Travis alive, and the first class care given to him. He really is our miracle baby.”