56 pints of blood needed to save life of woman in labour
A MASSIVE 56 pints of blood were used to save the life of Sara Palmer when she was rushed to hospital with internal bleeding.
Her baby Isabella Eva was born by emergency caesarean section while doctors struggled to find what was causing the haemorrhaging.
They found a tumour on her liver and skilled doctors and their medical teams spent eight hours saving her life.
One of the specialists later admitted that he hoped that night to save at least mother or baby.
But save them they did - and now as a heartfelt thank-you, family and friends have set up a new charity "Blood4Bella" to encourage more people to give blood.
Initially it started as a Facebook site so that they could replenish the blood stocks used to save Sara and Bella.
More than 150 registered immediately to give a pint of blood and Sara, a school transport officer, and her builder husband Joe were overwhelmed by the response.
Now the charity has been launched nationwide with its own website not only to ask people to give an hour of their time to save a life, but also to raise funds for the Betsi Cadwaladr NHS Trust's Betsi fund locally and for the NHS Blood and Transplant Service, which runs the blood service in England Wales.
Things started to go wrong late on March 12 when Sara, 37 weeks pregnant, had serious chest pains and was vomiting.
Sara's blood pressure was dangerously low when she arrived at Glan Clwyd Hospital in Bodelwyddan.
A team of 19 staff worked solidly for eight hours.
Bella was born and placed on life support while investigations took place to find out why Sara was losing so much blood.
Police cars were used to bring in her blood type from hospitals in Liverpool and Wrexham as doctors fought desperately to repair a major bleed in her liver.
Emergency blood light deliveries were by from the NHS Blood Service in Liverpool with a police escort through the Kingsway Tunnel.
Sarah was then transferred to Liverpool's Aintree Hospital for specialist liver surgery.
It was 36 hours later when she woke up from the anaesthetic to be told that she had a beautiful baby daughter.
But it was three long days before she was well enough to return to Glan Clwyd Hospital to meet Bella.
Joe proudly carried her to his wife and the look on her face said it all.
The anaesthetist later told how Sara's blood pressure was 60/30 which was bordering on coma.
She was bleeding internally and doctors did not know where the bleeding was coming from until they performed a laparotomy to investigate the condition of her internal organs.
They then discovered it was coming from her liver.
He explained that from the moment she entered hospital there was a thirty minute window to try and save her and remove the baby.
They hoped they could save one of them.
But Sara's basic survival instincts were incredible and every time they thought they were losing her she would fight back.
Bella seemed to have adopted the same gene and after being placed on life support made a speedy recovery.
Bella is now a healthy bundle of joy.
Sara is back home at their home near Ruthin, is getting better, taking each day as it comes, but unfortunately needs further surgery to remove a benign tumour from her liver.
"It's just good to be home as a family," she said....
Their new charity website is www.blood4bella.org.uk