Baby born with heart wired the wrong way round survives major surgery: 'So strong'

Five-month-old baby Daphne Payne was born with a congenital heart defect. (SWNS)
Five-month-old baby Daphne Payne was born with a congenital heart defect. (SWNS)

A baby born with her heart wired the wrong way round has survived major surgery at just eight days old to be discharged home.

Daphne Payne, now five months, arrived into the world with a congenital heart defect known as transposition of the great arteries.

Her mother Hayley Farrer, 35, was told soon after her 20-week scan that the two main blood vessels leaving her unborn daughter's heart had swapped over.

Doctors originally planned to induce Hayley so she could give birth by C-section, but her little girl's heartbeat kept dropping.

Daphne Payne
Her parents were told that something was wrong shortly after the 20-week scan. (SWNS)
Daphne Payne
Daphne had to have surgery at just two days old. (SWNS)

However, Daphne was delivered naturally at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital on 26 August, 2022, at 38 weeks, weighing 6lb 13oz.

She was immediately taken to the neonatal intensive care unit, with her mother seeing her for the first time nine hours after her birth.

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The newborn underwent her first operation at just two days old to keep a small gap in her heart open, in a procedure called an atrial septostomy.

Eight days later she then had open heart surgery to move the two major blood vessels into the correct place in an operation that had a 98% success rate.

Daphne Payne
The newborn was discharged from hospital after 16 days. (SWNS)
Daphne Payne
She has "hit every milestone" ever since. (SWNS)

Despite this, Hayley – a police officer from Fleet, in Hampshire – said: "When she went down I was really positive but there is always something in the back of your mind saying that someone has to be the 2%."

Fortunately, the procedure passed smoothly and Daphne spent just two weeks in the specialist children’s hospital before being able to come home in September 2022, at just 16 days old.

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Hayley noted: "You would never think she would have been through what she had been through.

"She is growing really well, she is six months on Sunday and she is developing really well. She is like any other baby – made of tough stuff."

The mother-of-one added: "She has hit every milestone, she is so strong."

Additional reporting by SWNS.

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