Mother’s anger turns to delight after her baby survives an abortion
By Liz Hull Last updated at 8:08 AM on 05th June 2008
Finley Crampton really shouldn’t be here. Although his parents would have loved another child, they knew their baby could inherit a life-threatening kidney condition – and they couldn’t take the risk.
After all, their first son had died of the condition and the second was born with serious kidney damage.
So when Finley’s mother, Jodie Percival, became pregnant while on the Pill, she and her fiance Billy Crampton, 35, made the agonising decision to abort this child.
Survivor: Jodie Percival and baby Finley who survived an abortion
‘Deciding to terminate at eight weeks was just utterly horrible but I couldn’t cope with the anguish of losing another baby,’ said Miss Percival, 25.
However, Finley had other ideas. And some time after the operation, Miss Percival felt a fluttering in her stomach.
Eventually her doctor sent her for a scan – and she discovered she was 19 weeks pregnant.
The child had survived the abortion and thrived in the womb. ‘I couldn’t believe it,’ said Miss Percival. ‘This was the baby I thought I’d terminated.
‘At first I was angry that this was happening to us, that the procedure had failed.
‘I wrote to the hospital, I couldn’t believe that they had let me down like this. They wrote back and apologised and said it was very rare.’
But a week later, another scan confirmed that this baby had kidney problems too, like the couple’s previous children.
Miss Percival carries a gene which triggers multicystic dysplastic kidney – which causes cysts to grow on the kidneys of an unborn baby.
Her first baby, Thane, had lived for only 20 minutes after she was forced to deliver him prematurely.
Her second son, Lewis, now 20 months, was born with a similar condition. He survives on one kidney.
However, doctors told the couple from Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, that this child was likely to survive, so they decided he deserved a chance.
And in November, Finley was born three weeks premature, at 6lb 3oz.
He had minor kidney damage but is expected to lead a normal life.
‘I knew if that operation hadn’t failed he wouldn’t have been there,’ said Miss Percival, a hairdresser.
‘I just couldn’t believe that this child had got through it all and looked so perfect.
‘He may need an operation but as only one of his kidneys is affected he can survive.
‘I still struggle to believe just what he has fought through. Now he’s here I wouldn’t change it for the world.’