Highlands & Islands

Meet Seamus the baby born with organs outside his body

Image caption Six month old Seamus and his parents Bryan and Laura Simpson

The parents of a boy born with organs on the outside his body have told of the journey of recovery.

Seamus Simpson was born in Glasgow in November with part of his bowel outside of his body.

His parents Laura and Bryan Simpson, from Fort William, have described his recovery so far as "miraculous".

However, they said that later this year he would be back in hospital for another operation on his bowel.

They told BBC Radio Scotland's Kaye Adams programme how they found out Seamus had a rare condition called gastroschisis when Mrs Simpson had her 12-week scan at Raigmore Hospital in Inverness.

The condition meant the baby's abdominal wall failed to develop properly in the womb, leaving his intestines to grow outside his body.

Mrs Simpson said: "I think that you always prepare yourself for something that could be wrong, you just never know, but we weren't expecting that.

"We were given the options to continue or not, but we both chose to carry on."

'Wee cuddle'

Seamus' delivery and treatment once born had to be handled by a hospital in either Aberdeen, Edinburgh or Glasgow, which offered specialist care.

The Simpsons took up the offer of care at Glasgow's Queen Elizabeth University Hospital.

Following the delivery, Seamus was taken to the hospital's neonatal unit, but not before his mother gave him a "wee cuddle".

She said: "We had been told that I would not be able to cuddle him after he was born because the bowel would be exposed and it would have to be wrapped in cling film.

"Bryan said to one of the doctors if I could cuddle him. They were understanding. It would have been upsetting not to have been able to cuddle him."

'Amazing wee guy'

In the neonatal unit, Seamus' bowel was placed in a plastic bag and suspended above him.

Mr Simpson said: "His bowel was suspended over a number of days to allow for gravity to work. On the fifth day he had surgery to close over his stomach."

Mrs Simpson said Seamus' recovery from this ordeal had been "miraculous" but that he now faces a further operation after a cyst was detected in his bowel.

He will return to Glasgow when he is between nine months and a year old for the surgery.

Mrs Simpson said: "He has come through so much. He is an amazing wee guy."