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‘Your newborn requires open heart surgery’

Created on 16/05/2016 @ 10:25
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It was devastating news that hit new parents Tony Meredith, a well-known local footballer, and Rebecca Duffield like a hammer blow.

After nine months of a relatively trouble-free pregnancy beautiful Ava May was born, but doctors were concerned that her ‘sats’ were low meaning that there was a problem with her oxygen flow.

Emergency scans were ordered and news was delivered of a long and difficult road ahead for the newborn and her family.

“It was such a shock to us as we were not aware of anything wrong during the pregnancy nor indeed when she was born on July 28 last year,” said Rebecca.

“But after the emergency scan Ava, was sent to Birmingham Hospital where they told us she needed open heart surgery to save her life and also surgery every 10-15 years. It was devastating.”

Ava was born with a heart condition called Tetralogy of Fallot that was quite literally threatening her life.

“This came obviously as a major shock to us. We simply weren’t expecting any problem let alone something so serious,” said Rebecca.

“On January 7, Ava was taken down to theatre at 3pm were she was in surgery for six hours. She spent 24 hours in intensive care where the staff were amazing and gave incredible care.

“She was moved to the high dependency unit were she was to stay until she came home.”

Unfortunately, Ava’s health deteriorated after she gathered fluid around her lung and heart but she bounced back and after several more days of care, she was on the road to recovery and left hospital.

Now with her first birthday in sight, Ava is enjoying life to the full (right) and her parents want to give something back along with another couple who have faced a traumatic time with their little son.

A football match between Team Ava and Team Noah, the son of another well-known local footballer Steve Hole and his partner Jodi, will take place at Latham Park, Newtown, on August 6 from 5pm with a bunch of activities running alongside through the afternoon.

“We hope to raise as much money as possible,” she added. “The money will go to great use at the hospital and help them buy the many things they desperately need.

“Birmingham Children's Hospital saved my daughter’s life and we will always be in their debt.”

To show your support, you can support the fund raising efforts through


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