I was told I'd never have kids after ectopic pregnancy – but my dead baby’s twin I didn’t know existed had SURVIVED
A MUM who was told she’d never have kids after an ectopic pregnancy has revealed her joy at discovering her dead baby’s twin – who she didn’t know existed – had SURVIVED.
Beth Richardson, 27, from Derbyshire, and husband Luis, 28, were overjoyed – and say their miracle baby helped her dad beat a shock cancer diagnosis.
Construction firm owner Luis faced a fight for his life after being diagnosed with stage four cancer just four days after tying the knot with his pregnant fiancé in October 2020.
Earlier that year, doctors told the couple they would never conceive again, after Beth’s surgery to remove an ectopic pregnancy.
But doctors found amazingly that a twin from the ectopic, who they didn’t even know existed, had survived surgery.
Baby Mireya – whose name is Spanish for miracle – was born in February. Three days later, Luis rang the bell for the end of his cancer treatment and now he has the all-clear.
Retail manager Beth, 27, says: "Mireya is a miracle in many ways. She survived the surgery to remove the ectopic and then she gave Luis the focus and the fight he needed to beat his cancer.
"We've been from joy to despair and back again so many times in the last year. Now, we want to enjoy every moment with our baby, we feel so blessed."
Luis and Beth met aged 12 and began dating officially in October 2018. The following year, Beth had surgery on a twisted ovary and was warned she would struggle to conceive.
Then in June 2020, she was taken into hospital again with severe pains, and doctors discovered she had an ectopic pregnancy. She had surgery to remove the pregnancy and was sent home.
Beth says: "I had a standard blood test two days later, which showed I was still pregnant. Incredibly when I had a scan, there was a twin still safely growing inside my womb. She had survived the surgery, without anyone even knowing she was there."
The couple’s luck seemed to be changing, but just weeks before their October wedding, Luis discovered a small lump on his neck.
Mireya is a miracle in many ways. She survived surgery… and then she gave Luis the focus and the fight he needed to beat his cancer
Beth says: "We'd lost a family friend, Roy Twist, to cancer that year. We were very close to him, and I'd asked him to give me away, but he died before our day came around.
"It was Roy's death which prompted us to get the lump on Luis' neck checked out. We really didn't think there would be a problem, because Luis was not ill at all, and he was only 27 years old."
Doctors at first thought the lump was a harmless infection, and the couple went ahead with their big day as planned. But four days later, Luis was diagnosed with stage four Hodgkin's Lymphoma.
Beth says: "We were shell-shocked. Luis was young, fit and healthy yet he had an advanced cancer.
"The next few months were a rollercoaster; I had bleeding and reduced movements and my pregnancy had to be closely monitored.
“Luis was at the hospital for chemotherapy, and he picked up sepsis and was very sick. We were warned we might lose him.
"But all the way through, we were focused on the baby. I really felt as though she was sent to save Luis – she gave him all the motivation he needed to fight."
I can't have any more [kids] after the ectopic surgery, and Luis' fertility has been affected by the chemo, so Mireya is so precious
Beth was induced at 38 weeks and baby Mireya, whose name means miracle, was born on February 21 this year, weighing 6lbs 10ozs and absolutely perfect.
Three days on, proud dad Luis had his final chemotherapy treatment and rang the bell. Last month, tests showed he is fully recovered and, though he will need checks in the future, his outlook is very positive.
Beth says: "Mireya is our only chance of a baby, I can't have any more after the ectopic surgery, and Luis' fertility has been affected by the chemo, so she is so precious. She and Luis have an amazing bond."
When Luis had to stop working during his illness, cancer charity Macmillan supported the family.
Beth says: "It was a struggle financially, but we had to live day to day – the money from Macmillan helped with our petrol costs and hospital parking.”
Ectopic pregnancy – the facts
An ectopic pregnancy is when a fertilised egg implants itself outside of the womb, usually in one of the fallopian tubes.
The fallopian tubes are the tubes connecting the ovaries to the womb. If an egg gets stuck in them, it won't develop into a baby and your health may be at risk if the pregnancy continues.
Unfortunately, it's not possible to save the pregnancy. It usually has to be removed using medicine or an operation.
In the UK, around 1 in every 90 pregnancies is ectopic. This is around 11,000 pregnancies a year.
An ectopic pregnancy doesn't always cause symptoms and may only be detected during a routine pregnancy scan.
For more information, check out the NHS site.
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