Rhyl mum urges for virus awareness

A Mum from Rhyl is pleading with expecting Mum's to look out for signs of an rare bug which caused her to lose her baby.

Simone Richardson, 25, contracted Parovirus B19 when she was pregnant with baby Coco. The virus is common among young children and is also known as 'slapped cheek syndrome' because it causes redness of the face.

It can usually be detected by a blood test, but doctors failed to spot Simone's symptons when she was took herself to hospital concerned she'd not felt the baby move.

The Mum, who is a Senior Stylist at Cruz Hairdressing in Rhyl, was immediately referred to Liverpool Women's Hospital where tests revealed she'd contracted the deadly bug. An emergency scan showed the unborn infant was carrying a lot of extra fluid and was severly anaemic.

Simone then had a blood transfusion through the womb to try and support Coco but she was born at 28 weeks in April this year. Doctors fought to save her, but the baby, who was only breathing through a machine, passed away two days later.

Simone told Heart the symptons Mums-to-be can look out for, she said: "I felt ill for the duration of my pregnancy, I had headaches and trouble breathing but as a first time Mum I put this down to a normal pregnancy. My face was extremely red and I had a larger than normal baby bump which was due to the fulid surrounding the baby.  I'd never heard of parovirus and as I didn't had the virus as a child my body didn't have the anti-bodies to fight the virus"

Simone and her partner Oliver Espley are now urging pregnant women who have symptons of Parovirus to have a blood test to catch the virus in it's early stages so it can be treated.

The couple and staff from Cruz Hairdressing have organised a charity walk up Snowdon to raise money for the special care baby unit at Glan Clwyd Hospital where Coco was cared for.

Donations for the walk can be made at Cruz Hairdressing on Sussex Street, Rhyl.