A BABY'S fight for survival has amazed her family and doctors.

Jade Howe is the baby that no one expected to live.

The bubbly nine-month-old shows no sign of her traumatic entry into this life, when she was born eight weeks early after an emergency Caesarean.

At just 4lb 6oz, the tiny youngster had jaundice, pneumonia, anaemia, a heart murmur and was expected to have brain damage.

Her mother, Nicola Howe, 30, of Bishop Auckland, County Durham, had started to haemorrhage badly, so staff at Bishop Auckland Hospital carried out the emergency operation.

Nicola lost nearly all her own blood, about seven pints.

She said: "I am lucky to be alive and Jade's survival is a bit of a miracle.

"Just before they carried out the emergency Caesarean, she had stopped breathing.

"Doctors said the baby was born dead because they couldn't get her breathing.

"Nobody can believe what's happened to her, when they got her a medical certificate they put 'lifeless at birth'."

The tiny youngster was rushed to South Cleveland Hospital, where it took seven hours to stabilise her.

But Jade was a fighter and defied everyone's expectations by pulling through. She is a normal, happy baby, with a keen interest in everything around her.

Health visitor Sharon Jardine said Jade was doing very well and her development was what it should be for a baby of her age.

Jade's proud mother is still amazed at her daughter's determination.

"When I look at her sometimes I still can't believe it," she said.