Published: 00:01, 19 June 2014
| Updated: 17:19, 19 June 2014
A mum who used up an entire hospital’s supply of her blood type shortly after giving birth has joined a campaign to encourage more people to donate.
Sara Miles, 31, gave birth to her son Noah in July 2011, but after just one and a half hours with her only child she suffered a huge haemorrhage.
Miss Miles, of Cheriton Road, Rainham, began losing blood fast. She quickly depleted Maidstone Hospital’s supply of A Rh negative – which only 7% of the population have – and had to receive the universal blood O Rh negative while vital supplies were ordered
She said: “My family were told that I may not survive.”
In total, she lost eight litres (14 pints) of blood and had to have an emergency hysterectomy.
"Without blood donors, I would not be here today" - mum Sara
The Ministry of Justice worker said: “I woke up the next day and hadn’t a clue what happened.
“Noah was fine though. He’s now three and is a little ginger terror.
“Without blood donors, I would not be here today, wouldn’t be a mummy to my son or planning my wedding to my fiance.
"Blood donors are my heroes and I will be eternally grateful.”
Miss Miles, who is set to marry Noah’s dad, Tony Cottenden, in July next year, is determined to encourage others to donate.
“Obviously, I can’t donate at the moment after taking so much blood, and neither can my mum as she has had a transfusion too. But Tony’s mum is doing it and a lot of my friends have started too.”
Mr Cottenden, 29, is also being persuaded to donate, and is currently trying to find the time in between two jobs as a prison officer and a personal trainer.
The levels of people giving blood tend to drop during hot weather, summer holidays, and big public events such as the World Cup.
Jon Latham, of NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “Our blood donors make up the greatest team in the world, and we’re grateful to each and every one of them including new donors registering this year."
Young people in particular are being called on to give blood and replace the 200,000 people a year who, for health or other reasons, can no longer donate.
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