Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Test That Saves Tiny Lives

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Test That Saves Tiny Lives

Article excerpt

Byline: Helen Sturdy

A test that could help reduce the number of stillbirths has been introduced at a Teesside hospital.

Mums-to-be can now be examined for the dangerous condition obstetric cholestasis at The James Cook University Hospital (JCUH).

The ailment, which reduces the flow of bile from the liver and builds up salts in the mother's blood, is thought to affect around 1pc of the population in the UK.

There is no known cause for the condition, but pregnant women are tested for cholestasis by checking the level of bile acids in their blood.

Previously, blood was sent to specialised centres for testing, but the Middlesbrough hospital is now able to analyse the samples on site, allowing quicker diagnosis.

New mum Tammy Walker, from Berwick Hills in Middlesbrough, recently gave birth to premature twins Tyler and Tristan.

The 27-year-old was diagnosed with the condition at James Cook and was able to begin her monitoring programme immediately. …

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