A horrified father got a shock when his son was born with an enormous 2kg tumour – which weighed as much as the baby.
Adrian Rycroft and his partner Emma Sharp, of Lindley , found out Aston had a tumour, called a sacrococcygeal teratoma, growing at the base of his tailbone at their 20-week scan.
After being monitored closely at Leeds General Infirmary for the remainder of the pregnancy baby Aston arrived by caesarean section three weeks early on December 27.
He underwent an 11.5 hour operation to remove the enormous tumour when he was just seven days old – an operation which could have killed him.
Adrian said: “After he was born Aston was being prepared for a very long and complicated operation, which he might not survive.
“To be honest it was a miracle he had lived through the pregnancy because the tumour was so large.
“For five days, Emma remained in the maternity suite and for five nights I slept in a chair beside her bed, which was very uncomfortable and exhausting.
“It was there that the nurse mentioned Eckersley House, Leeds, which is run by The Sick Children’s Trust – my mind was so overwhelmed by thoughts of Aston that I hadn’t considered I might be able to stay there again.
“The charity had been a lifeline for my family in 2011 after the birth of my son Jensen, but to be told Eckersley House had another room for Emma and I to stay in while Aston was in hospital was my salvation.
“There is nothing more traumatic than being back in the same hospital where you lost a child – the memories all came flooding back.
“Emma was so supportive and Eckersley House offered me some respite – a haven where I could collect my thoughts and overcome my demons and get my strength back for Aston.”
The operation to remove the tumour was a success and whilst Aston was recovering on the neonatal intensive care unit his parents remained at Eckersley House, meaning they were never more than a few minutes from their baby’s hospital bedside.
Eckersley House manager, Jane McHale, said: “It must have brought back many painful memories for Adrian being back in Leeds General Infirmary after Aston was born.
“I am so glad we were able to offer him and Emma a room in Eckersley House and knew how much it had meant to Adrian back in 2011.
“I am thrilled to hear that Aston is doing well and the outreach team are pleased with his progress.
“It is lovely to hear that Adrian is thrilled to have another baby in the family and that Aston is such a good boy.”
For further information about The Sick Children’s Trust, please visit http://www.sickchildrenstrust.org/