Melanie Gill and her daughter Naomi who was born weighing little over 2lbs 21 years ago.

Uckfield woman talks about effects of premature birth on her life

Twenty-year-old Naomi Gill weighed little over 2lbs when she was born and now, as she prepares to graduate from university, she is taking part in a study to see how babies fare following very premature birth.


Naomi Gill spent three months in an incubator being fed through a tube after being born prematurely.

Naomi, who went to Rocks Park Primary School and to Uckfield Community Technology College, was born at 25 weeks instead of the usual gestation period of 37 to 40 weeks.

The aim of the research is to discover the long-term impact of spending your earliest days in an incubator rather than in the womb.

The MailOnline carried a report about the study yesterday after speaking to Naomi’s mother, Melanie, and to Naomi herself about the way her life had been affected, so far, by the extremely premature birth.

In that report Melanie remembers being told that her baby’s chances of survival were slim.

She was no bigger, at birth, that the palm of her father’s hand. “It was awful,” Mel told the Mail Online. “We couldn’t hold her until she was a week old – bonding with your baby isn’t really possible in that environment.”


Naomi, who is due to graduate this summer from the University of Gloucestershire with a degree in performing arts, was in an incubator for three months and fed through a tube. Doctors said that if she did live she would probably be deaf, blind or have significant learning disabilities.

But, as the MailOnline says, Naomi has confounded expectations though there have been significant challenges along the way.

Read the full story on the MailOnline here: The hidden toll of being a premature baby: Modern medicine helped them defy the odds.

See also:

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New proposal to turn Fernley Park shop unit into flat

Slow broadband is damaging Wealden economy says, MP

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