The extraordinary work of St George’s fetal medicine, neonatal and maternity units will be in the spotlight this month, as our brand new three-part documentary series, Baby Surgeons: Delivering Miracles, starts on Channel 4.

Each episode tells the story of three women who have rare and complex pregnancies. As Professor Basky Thilaganathan, Clinical Director for our Fetal Medicine Unit, explains in the opening titles: “It’s a miracle when a sperm and an egg meet, but sometimes things don’t go to plan.”

As one of the UK’s leading fetal medicine units, the series will showcase some of the most pioneering baby surgery performed. In the second episode, Professor Asma Khalil, Consultant Obstetrician and Multiple Births Lead, performs a procedure that’s been carried out once before at St George’s.

Professor Khalil said: “I’ve done hundreds of surgeries throughout my career, but this one will always stick in my mind. The baby had amniotic band syndrome, a very rare condition in which bands of tissue become tangled around the baby’s limbs. With a telescope inside the womb, we go and look for the band and cut it.”

With the support of our medical teams, the expectant parents we meet must navigate incredibly tough decisions about their babies’ futures. Professor Thilaganathan said: “It’s my job to make sure parents understand they have choices, and that no matter what choice they make we will be there to support them and move forward with their decision.”

Sadly, despite medical intervention, not all pregnancies go to plan – and together with Channel 4 and Tommy’s charity, we will be aiming to raise awareness and break the silence surrounding baby loss, including miscarriage and stillbirth.

Baby Surgeons: Delivering Miracles was originally planned to be two programmes, but Channel 4 commissioned a third after watching a preview of the footage captured by Wonderhood Studios – the production company we’ve been working closely with over the last eighteen months.

Filming took place throughout 2020 and was able to continue during the pandemic, with most filming undertaken using GoPro cameras worn by staff, temporary fixed cameras in clinical rooms, and video diaries recorded by the patients at home.

Thank you and well done to the many staff and teams who have been involved in this series – including, but not limited to, fetal medicine, neonatal, anaesthetics and maternity. It would not have been possible without your support and commitment.

The first episode of the series will be broadcast on Monday 26 April at 9pm on Channel 4, with the following two programmes going out at 9pm on Monday 3 May and Monday 10 May respectively.

Join us on Twitter (@StGeorgesTrust) where we will be live tweeting throughout each episode – and get involved using the hashtag #BabySurgeons.