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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 April 2006, 20:53 GMT 21:53 UK
'Miracle baby' born after surgery
Julia & Tim Smith with baby Katie
Julia Smith nearly died during surgery to remove the fertilised egg
A couple from East Grinstead, in West Sussex, have defied medical odds and had their first child after suffering a cornual ectopic pregnancy.

Julia Smith underwent pioneering surgery to remove the fertilised egg from inside a muscle connected to the fallopian tube outside the womb.

Within 12 weeks she was pregnant again with "miracle baby" Katie.

Sherif Girgis, Mrs Smith's obstetrician at East Surrey Hospital, said the case was "very unique".

Katie Smith
Katie's parents have described her as a miracle baby

Her husband Tim said she had come close to dying during the operation to remove the egg using keyhole surgery.

In a cornual ectopic pregnancy the muscle cannot stretch to accommodate the egg and rupturing occurs leading to either a hysterectomy or death.

Mr Girgis said: "It is very unique and we were planning to check her tubes to show that they were still normal after the surgery but before we could... we found out that she was pregnant."

Mrs Smith went on to have a normal pregnancy without any complications.

"It's all I've ever wanted, to have a baby, and we have one now," she said.

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