04 October 2017, By Mater Lotteries

Thanks to you, Chloe will spend this Christmas at home.

2 min read

At 25 weeks, mum-to-be Cherie woke at 2 am in extreme pain.  She was alone while her husband was interstate.

Unable to ease the pain and not knowing what else to do, she decided to drive herself to the hospital.

To her absolute disbelief, Cherie was already in labour and needed to be transferred to Mater Mothers’ Hospitals to deliver her baby.

“Once I arrived at Mater the doctors and midwives did everything they could to try and stop the contractions. I began steroids and magnesium sulphate therapy to give our baby the best, fighting chance of survival.”

“We knew that our baby probably wouldn’t cry; she probably wouldn’t even make a sound. We looked at the survival rates and we talked in percentages.

“The uncertainty was crippling, but we had no choice but to believe our baby would be one of the strong ones.”

Three days later, on 30 November 2016, Cherie and Andrew’s baby came racing into the world. Born more than 14 weeks early, she weighed only 730 grams.

Chloe was taken to the Neonatal Critical Care Unit straight away and the first time parents were not able to hold Chloe until she was one-week-old.

From there, Chloe continued to fight through setbacks and challenges to meet milestone after milestone.

“There were so many things that could have gone wrong along the way, but somehow we were able to avoid most of them,” Cherie said.

After 81 days, Cherie and Andrew were thrilled it be finally taking Chloe home.

Now at eleven months old, Chloe is a very happy and healthy baby.

We believe every moment between a mother and her baby matters, and research is the single-most important tool we have in the long-term fight to keep babies like Chloe alive.

Your ongoing support plays a part in ensuring Mater Research findings are taken from the bench to the bedside as quickly as possible. You are helping babies like Chloe spend this Christmas at home with their families where they belong.

Mater researchers are currently conducting world first research study into magnesium sulphate therapy. What is magnesium sulphate therapy? Sulphate is an important nutrient for healthy growth and development and is supplied from a mother to her baby during pregnancy. Mater researchers have found that in babies born prematurely, they rapidly become sulphate deficient. But if a certain protective blood level of sulphate can be dentified, it may be possible to keep blood sulphate at a ‘safe’ level by administering this nutrient after birth. This simple, yet effective therapy, has already shown signs in reducing the risk of cerebral palsy in a pilot study of 100 mothers and babies at Mater.