1,800 miles and 77 Days

1,800 miles and 77 Days

A regular 32-week pregnancy scan for mum Krystle revealed that her baby was accumulating excess fluid in her tummy and had an enlarged liver. This led to a planned C-section when baby Jordie was just 35 weeks gestation.

Jordie’s first treatments were carried out in the hospital in Malta, however when the cause was not found, the medical team decided that the best treatment would be found in London. As a result the family embarked on a 1,800 mile journey from Malta to King’s College Hospital, when baby Jordie was just one week old.

The travelling presented new challenges, especially as mum Krystle was still recovering from the C-section. Luckily the Camberwell House was there to offer a safe and caring haven for the family during their stay in hospital.

On their second day, little Jordie was admitted for emergency surgery which exposed the problem. Jordie had been born with a twisted bowel which had also perforated. The leaking liquid was pressing on her liver, therefore the enlarged liver was shown on Krystal's pregnancy scan. The surgery lasted six hours and resulted in having a small portion of her bowels removed and the fitting of temporary stoma bags.

During the next five weeks, the two stomas enabled baby Jordie to heal and grow. Mum and dad settled in, made friends and became a valued part of the House community while spending their days at Jordie’s bedside. After five weeks, baby Jordie underwent her second surgery to remove the stoma bags and rejoin her bowels. After just 24 hours, the medical team informed her delighted parents that all had gone well.


During the family’s stay, dad Stephen volunteered to help out at the Camberwell House summer BBQ, as part of the team that cooked vast quantities of sausages and hamburgers for the hungry hordes who came together to celebrate another successful year and reconnect with other families who have travelled the same road of having a child in hospital.

For Krystle, being able to stay at the Camberwell House was particularly important in the early days as she recovered from the C-section and postnatal readjustments. Having a place with facilities and a friendly community of other parents going through similar experiences, as well as having supportive staff, was so helpful for this couple who were nearly two thousand miles from home.


Throughout her treatment, baby Jordie was also visited by two Maltese VIPs. During the third week, she was visited by the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in Malta, Archbishop Charles J. Scicluna. The next day after she was discharged, Jordie also got the opportunity to meet the President of Malta, H.E. Mrs. Marie Louise Coleiro Preca. Both VIPs had been on official visits to Maltese patients receiving treatment at different hospitals in London.

After a total of 77 days Jordie was finally well enough to be discharged from hospital and could return home to Malta to the great joy of family and friends. On the second week back in Malta, she was admitted to Mater Dei hospital for post-operative observation. Happily, Jordie was discharged after four nights and now she is back home ready to start exploring the world outside a hospital room.

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