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Tuesday, 10 July, 2001, 11:14 GMT 12:14 UK
Transplant baby stays in hospital
Freya and Adam Stratford
Freya with her brother, Adam
A baby girl who was due to leave hospital four weeks after receiving a new liver is being kept in for several more days.

Freya Stratford was expected to leave the Diana, Princess of Wales Children's Hospital, Birmingham, and return home to Penrith in Cumbria with her parents Paul and Clare.

But seven-month-old Freya developed a slight temperature overnight and doctors have decided she should stay in hospital for a short time longer.

A spokeswoman said: "She will be allowed to go home later this week. Obviously her parents are a bit disappointed."

Freya with her mother, Clare
Clare Stratford cuddles Freya
Freya had been seriously ill with the bile duct condition biliary atresia and was in desperate need of a donor.

After a national appeal resulting in an organ being found, she eventually underwent the complex eight-hour procedure last month.

Speaking on Monday, her mother thanked the donor family for giving her daughter "the gift of life".

"It's just unbelievable. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't have my little girl."

Freya will still be monitored closely to guard against infection but is expected to lead as normal a life as possible.

Donor card plea

Mrs Stratford continued: "This proves that organ donation does work.

"But people have to realise that although Freya has had her transplant there are lots of other children and adults waiting for organs."

"It's so, so important that people still carry a card."

Beverley Cornforth, the regional transplant educationalist for the West Midlands health authorities,said: "Freya would have been dead if she had not had her transplant.

"The fact that they are going home to have a normal family life is what it's all about - to give a normal quality of life to the patient and the family itself."

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See also:

18 Jun 01 | Health
Baby gets liver transplant
04 Jun 01 | Health
Urgent appeal for dying baby
17 May 00 | Medical notes
Biliary Atresia
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