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Woman with only one egg left defies odds and welcomes 'miracle' baby boy

Woman with only one egg left defies odds and welcomes 'miracle' baby boy

Stacey Broadmeadow was shocked to discover she had a rare cancer which put her motherhood dreams into jeopardy.

A woman’s dream to become a mum came true after her final embryo was successfully transferred through IVF and she now has a ‘miracle’ son.

Stacey Broadmeadow, 38, a theatre manager at the Palace and Opera House in Manchester, always dreamed of being a parent but this dream almost didn’t come true when she began feeling poorly in 2017.

She noticed a sharp pain near her appendix which was followed by spotting in between her periods, this prompted her to get in touch with her GP.

“When I had the spotting, I thought ‘something doesn’t feel right’ and usually I wouldn’t bother about it but, because I knew in the future I wanted to be a mum, I thought I had better go and get checked out,” she said.

After her GP ruled out pregnancy, Stacey was sent for an ultrasound scan where the radiographer noticed unusual signs.

She underwent a CT scan and blood tests, which included checking for markers for cancer.

Stacey was able to have a 'miracle baby' after being diagnosed with a rare cancer.

Further scans revealed there was fluid in Stacey’s womb, leading to an MRI and referral to the Christie NHS Foundation Trust in Manchester.

An oncologist suspected Stacey had a very rare cancer called pseudomyxoma peritonei (PMP) and warned she could lose her ovaries.

“I was devastated, absolutely devastated,” Stacey said. “I literally just thought, ‘Well, that’s it. I’m never going to be a mum. I’m never going to have the dream that I’ve always wanted.'"

PMP is a very rare form of cancer that starts in the lining of the appendix, where it produces a jelly-like substance which bursts out, spreading cells and mucin around the stomach.

Symptoms include a loss of appetite, unexpected weight gain and stomach pain.

Stacey underwent initial surgery at the Christie but was informed she’d need a second operation to remove her spleen, gallbladder, layers of tissue, fallopian tubes and both ovaries. This would be followed by putting heated chemotherapy (HIPEC) directly into the abdomen to kill any remaining tumour cells.

In between the two operations, Stacey was able to have her eggs harvested on the NHS and she went to St Mary’s Hospital in Manchester to have two rounds of egg freezing. There, 17 of her eggs were harvested and after recovering for three to four months from the surgeries and shielding during the Covid pandemic, the process to create her miracle baby began.

“You’d think that 17 eggs would be quite a lot, but it really wasn’t,” Stacey explained.

“They defrosted them and I was left with about eight useable eggs.

After having a miscarriage, Stacey thought her dream of becoming of mum might be over.

“We managed to get four embryos but only two then made it to the next level. So then I only had two embryos.

“One was transferred but unfortunately I miscarried with that one.

“And then the other embryo, which was Harry – they told me that it wasn’t the most viable embryo but they put him in the freezer anyway.

“And so, after I’d miscarried, I kind of thought the dream was over, and I was never going to have a baby, but I thought ‘well, I’ve got one last chance, I’ll give it a go’.”

Stacey’s final embryo was transferred in February 2022 and she became pregnant, eventually welcoming her son Harry in November last year.

“He is an absolute miracle,” she said. “Every time I look at him, I just think how lucky I am.

Stacey gave birth to Harry in November 2022.

“For me to be diagnosed with what I had, and to go through everything that I did, and for him then to be that little embryo that I was told wasn’t the best… I call him my little Nemo.

“In the film, Finding Nemo, Nemo was the last little egg left. So he’s my little Nemo. He’s my little miracle. He’s just so special.”

Specialist nurse Rebecca Halstead from the Christie - who supported Stacey - said: “Being there for patients like Stacey is the reason I do what I do.

“PMP is rare, so many patients remain undiagnosed or receive incorrect and inadequate treatment before they receive the right diagnosis.

“Here at the Christie, we not only have the expertise and technology to treat these patients today, but we’re also doing research that will benefit patients in the future.”

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Parenting, News, Life, Real Life