Expecting her first child at 46 years old, Titilayo Olanlege faced a challenging pregnancy, with potentially dangerous complications. Her dream of motherhood started to look like a lonely, uphill battle.
The Winnipeg woman was never truly alone, however – not with the compassionate care and support of her family, her community, St. Boniface Hospital caregivers, and the generosity of our Foundation donors who back them up.
Early in her pregnancy, Olanlege developed a pulmonary embolism, a sudden and dangerous blockage of a major artery in the lungs, usually caused by a blood clot. Hers was small, thankfully, and it responded well to treatment by daily injections. She recovered, but her problems were far from over.
Routine blood tests showed that Olanlege had elevated liver enzymes, which indicates inflamed or damaged liver tissue. “It put my caregivers on their toes, trying to find out why,” she says.
“They explained to me that the condition could affect my delivery. Dr. Corinne Paterson, my obstetrician and gynaecologist (ob-gyn), decided I would need to be monitored closely. So, I was admitted for observation, usually no more than overnight at St. Boniface Hospital,” says Olanlege. She went on to be admitted twice more during her pregnancy, as her liver enzymes rose and fell.
The support and attention Olanlege received at the Hospital has stuck with her. “Dr. Paterson was very friendly. When I went to meet her, I wasn’t afraid. I wasn’t scared – rather, I felt free to talk and was comfortable with her,” she says.
“Looking at her smiling face helped me to know everything was going to be all right.”
“If I told her I was afraid, she was able to tell me how the situation really was. She was good at explaining things in terms that were understandable. I want to thank her and thank God for doctors like her.”
3…2…1…Happy New Year!
Despite multiple health challenges throughout her pregnancy, Olanlege delivered a healthy baby boy, named Daniel, on New Year’s Eve 2019 “without any problem,” she says.
Olanlege is thankful to the front-line hospital staff who cared for her and her son. “One nurse knew that I was a first-time mom, and she gave me a book called Baby’s Best Chance – Parents’ Handbook of Pregnancy and Baby Care. That nurse was very nice and thoughtful, and the book was really helpful.”