A baby has started breathing on her own after doctors gave up hope and switched off her life-support machine. The baby Grace Vincent was diagnosed with an infection of late-onset Group B streptococcus (GBS), which doctors felt had progressed too far for treatment.
"We came to the decision to switch off the machine. She was baptised and all the family came to say goodbye," said her mother Emily Ashurst. "We held her in our arms and waited for her last breath." However Grace stabilized and has since regained her senses of smell and touch and her vocal ability.
Grace was brought to the Newcastle General Hospital on May 16 after she was distressed and developed purple patches on the skin. Her father Pete is a marine and had just returned from Afghanistan when she fell sick.
However she has recovered in what is termed a miracle. "She has opened one eye but is still blind. Her pupils have begun dilating back to their normal size," her mother said.
Meningitis is a serious infection of the brain and the key to treating it is early diagnosis.