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Friday, 1 March, 2002, 17:30 GMT
Paralysed rugby player's baby joy
Roger, Jayne and Tristan Deri Flynn Thomas
Roger Thomas searched for treatment on the internet
A paralysed man from south west Wales who was told he would never be a father has said he was "overwhelmed" after the birth of his baby son.

Roger Thomas, 42, from Tenby in Pembrokeshire, and his wife Jayne, had tried various fertility treatments in the UK without success.

Tristan Deri Flynn Thomas
Tristan Deri Flynn Thomas weighed 8lbs 14ozs
But pioneering treatment in the United States has resulted in the birth, on Wednesday, of Tristan Deri Flynn.

Roger was paralysed from the neck down in a rugby accident when he was 17 and was told by doctors that he could never have children.

Surgeons recommended that the couple use a sperm donor.

But the couple never gave up hope.

Mr Thomas used the internet to find a clinic in Los Angeles offering a new kind of fertility treatment called ICSI, where a single sperm is injected into an egg.

It failed the first time but his wife became pregnant after a second round of treatment.

The treatment cost 25,000 which was partly funded by a home improvement loan and a 5,000 grant by the Welsh Rugby Union's Charitable Trust.


The sleepless nights and all the little niggles of having a child won't be a problem for us after everything we've been through.

Roger Thomas

Mr Thomas present at the birth of Tristan who weighed 8lbs 14ozs.

He described the experience as being "long drawn out but certainly not boring."

"The sleepless nights and all the little niggles of having a child won't be a problem for us after everything we've been through," he said.

The couple want their story to give hope to other couples in the same situation.

And, as far as adding to the family is concerned, Mr Thomas added: "It is a possibility, but we haven't decided yet, we'll take it one at a time at the moment."

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BBC Wales's Rebecca John
"The couple hope their example will encourage others trying for a baby to be persistent"
See also:

26 May 01 | UK
Woman has twins at 56
16 Jan 02 | Health
IVF 'fastest way to get pregnant'
05 Jul 01 | Health
Number of twins on increase
06 Sep 00 | Wales
Row over IVF postcode 'lottery'
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