Lady Louise celebrates her birthday following an emergency birth 18 years ago

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    Lady Louise Windsor, the eldest of Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex’s two children, celebrated her 18th birthday on Monday. But the Queen’s grandchild entered the Firm in quite remarkable fashion back in November 2003.

    It was first revealed the Countess of Wessex, now 56, fell pregnant with her and the Duke of Wessex’s first child some months earlier in May.

    Following the announcement, which came less than four-years after Edward and Sophie tied the knot in 1999, a statement from Buckingham Palace read: “The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh and members of both families are delighted.”

    It was also disclosed Sophie was expected to give birth in early December.

    However, after the Countess started experiencing cramps at her Surrey home Bagshot Park in November, she was transferred to Frimley Park Hospital, some four miles away.

    Sophie then gave birth to a baby girl via emergency caesarean section following a placental abruption.

    According to Royal Central, this resulted in quite “severe blood loss” to both Sophie and the baby.

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    A press release published on November 10 confirmed the birth of the Queen’s seventh grandchild.

    “Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex was safely delivered of a baby girl by emergency caesarean section at 11.32pm on Saturday 8th November, at the Frimley Park NHS Hospital in Surrey,” it read.

    The statement also confirmed Lady Louise weighed 4lbs 9oz, making her considerably lighter than many of her cousins and her brother.

    In comparison, Louise’s younger brother, James, weighed in at 6lbs 2oz in 2007.

    Prince William tipped the scales at 7lb 1.5oz and his younger brother Prince Harry was deemed to be on the lighter end of the Firm at 6lbs 14oz.

    Louise’s press release added: “Her Royal Highness and her daughter are both stable.

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    “As a purely precautionary measure, the baby was taken to the regional neonatal unit at St George’s Hospital, Tooting.”

    Royal Central recalls how Prince Edward was forced to fly back to the UK from an official visit to Mauritius during his daughter’s birth and split his time between seeing Sophie in Surrey and Louise in London.

    When the Countess was reunited with her daughter at Frimley, the Earl of Wessex told reporters: “The important thing is that this has been a fantastic day in our lives, a day of great relief and joy, and it’s difficult to explain what it is to be together as a family for the first time.”

    Sophie was discharged from Frimley some 11 days after the premature birth of Louise on November 19.

    Following her release, the Countess said: “I can’t thank staff and the medical team and nurses at Frimley Park enough for all they have done for me and our beautiful daughter who will be joining us at home to complete our family very soon.

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    “I am thrilled to be going home.”

    Despite this, the premature birth led to complications known as esotropia – an eye condition that turns the eye outwards.

    Fortunately, Louise’s optical issues have since been corrected.



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