Little fighter paves way for mum to join support team

Jess Chapman with her parents Megan and Jon Picture: OX67285 Denis Kennedy

Jess Chapman with her parents Megan and Jon Picture: OX67285 Denis Kennedy

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Abingdon and Wantage, South Oxford and Kennington. Call me on 01865 425431

JUST over a year ago, doctors told Megan and Jon Chapman their unborn baby had a 50 per cent chance of surviving.

Now, having survived an operation to move several of her internal organs, baby Jess has beaten all the odds.

Jess was born with Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH).

Her stomach, intestines, and small bowel were all in the place where her left lung should be, preventing it from developing properly.

As soon as she was born at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital on March 21, doctors rushed her away from her mum for six hours of scans.

Just 36 hours later, they had performed an operation to move her organs into the right place.

A year on, Mrs Chapman, 29, said: “They said she would never be an Olympian, but the way she is going she could prove them wrong.

“She is doing absolutely fantastically, you wouldn’t know anything was wrong except for the scar.”

Mrs Chapman, who lives in Wantage and works at Seacourt Tower, Botley, said Jess has not shown any of the common health problems associated with CDH, such as reflux, oral aversion (an inability to feed properly) or developmental issues.

She is going to Little Stars nursery in Harwell, near Didcot, and making lots of friends.

Her parents are now looking forward to healthier times for Jess, but they haven’t forgotten the charity which supported them for the 17 weeks before she was born, when they had no idea what was going to happen to their baby girl.

CDH UK provides support and essential information to expectant parents, new parents, and those who are bereaved.

Mrs Chapman said: “If I hadn’t found them I don’t know what we would have done.

“It was difficult enough even with their support, so without them I would have felt very alone.”

“The hospital were great but they offered no emotional support To show her gratitude, Mrs Chapman has become a family liaison volunteer for CDH UK in Oxfordshire.

She will organise family get-togethers and provide the same advice and support to families that she and her husband were given just over a year ago.

She said: “You can sometimes come away from hospital appointments not quite understanding what has been said.

“With CDH UK you can go and talk to people going through the same thing, which for us was great.”

On Saturday, Mrs Chapman held a fundraising gig at King Alfred’s Head pub in Wantage. Canadian rock duo Cherry Suede stopped by on their UK tour and performed with all profits going to CDH.

To help Mrs Chapman fundraise, visit mycharity page.com/megchap

CDH EXPLAINED

Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia occurs in approximately one in 2,500 births and accounts for about eight per cent of all major congenital abnormalities

 ‘Congenital’ means born with

‘Diaphragmatic’ means of or affecting the diaphragm – the thin sheet of muscle that helps us to breathe and keeps our chest and stomach contents separate.

 ‘Hernia’ is a general term used to describe a ‘bulge’ or ‘protrusion’ of an organ, for example, the stomach, through the structure or muscle that usually contains it.

Our top stories:

Over 100 Oxfordshire schools may be ordered to turn academy

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 1st July 2015

MORE than 100 primary schools and 11 secondary schools in Oxfordshire could be told they are “coasting” and made academies under tougher new Government rules.

Revving revellers enjoy ‘best ever’ village bike night

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 1st July 2015

THE peaceful evening calm of an Oxfordshire village was shattered when more than 10,000 bikers roared into town.

Rush to surf internet gathers pace as Oxfordshire gets wired up

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Wednesday 1st July 2015

THE number of regular internet users in Oxfordshire rose by 22,000 in the first three months of this year compared to the same period two years ago.

Comedian Noel Fielding's painting auctioned for Oxford hospice

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Wednesday 1st July 2015

A BIZARRE painting by television star and comedian Noel Fielding is to be auctioned to raise money for Oxford children’s hospice Helen & Douglas House.

South Park users demand new lights after woman is attacked

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Wednesday 1st July 2015

HUNDREDS of residents are backing a campaign for lights to be installed in part of South Park after an alleged sex assault there.

Cuts and rising care demands putting more children at risk

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Tuesday 30th June 2015

THE man in charge of the county’s children’s services has warned a surge in cases on the back of Operation Bullfinch and other child abuse scandals is leading to huge pressure on his department.

Delays on train and bus services in Oxfordshire tonight

Oxford Mail: A First Great Western High Speed Train

6:53pm Tuesday 30th June 2015

CROSS Country servuce between Derby and Oxford are delayed by about 20 minutes tonight.

Fraudster posing as store detective cons pensioner in Blackbird Leys

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

4:07pm Tuesday 30th June 2015

A MAN pretending to be a store detective stole cash from an 85-year-old man.

Update: First RAF flight carrying bodies of Tunisia victims to arrive at Brize Norton tomorrow

Oxford Mail:

10:36am Tuesday 30th June 2015

ONE of the victims of the Tunisian beach massacre is being treated at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.

Mourners pay their respects to much-loved Aown Dogar

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Tuesday 30th June 2015

A TEENAGER who was the “life and soul” of his family was given a heartfelt farewell from hundreds of mourners yesterday.

Get the suncream ready as a heatwave hits Oxfordshire

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Tuesday 30th June 2015

A MINI heatwave will hit Oxfordshire this week, with temperatures set to reach 30C tomorrow.

Police call on charities for help supporting victims

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Tuesday 30th June 2015

CHARITIES and voluntary organisations could increasingly help Thames Valley Police tackle crimes such as rape in the future, the force’s new chief constable has said.

Ceremony honours veteran ‘whose colour saved his life’

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Tuesday 30th June 2015

A BLACK RAF veteran who said his skin colour saved his life in Nazi-occupied Europe will be remembered at a ceremony in Thame today.

Pupils on parade to help forces charity

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Tuesday 30th June 2015

A SCHOOL that took part in Camouflage Day said it was vital their pupils learned about the armed forces.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree