Big heart of a tiny fighter

October 18, 2007 2 Comments »

Article from: Herald Sun

A MELBOURNE miracle has been billed Australia’s tiniest tot.

Little Elora was the length of a pen and weighed less than a juicy orange when she was born, almost five months prematurely, at the Royal Women’s Hospital.

Today, the tot is thriving on Mum’s milk, fed through a nasal tube.

From a 319g red, scrawny scrap of near-life she has thrived to develop into a chunkier cherub.

Now, at 8 1/2 months, she is 4.7kg — still half the average weight of four-week-olds who join her at weekly mothers’ group meetings.

Elora is believed to be the smallest baby ever born to survive her desperate start in life.

Mum Adele De Bondi, a nurse, had known the likely outcome when major problems were diagnosed just over four months into her first pregnancy.

“She was too small, too premature, to be viable, and I expected the worst,” Ms De Bondi said.

“But at the same time, my gut instinct was that this child would be a fighter and if she was allowed to be born, she would take it from there.”

Delivery was by caesarean section and she did not see her daughter until the next day when she was pushed in a wheelchair to gaze at the tiny tot struggling for life in a humidicrib.

“Her head was the same size as my thumbnail, but I bonded with her the split-second I saw her fighting for life,” she said.

“I was amazed and ecstatic and overawed she had survived the night, and I knew instantly and instinctively that she would survive.

“She was too critically ill for them to measure her, but my mother photographed her alongside a pen and they were roughly the same length.”

Elora has spent months in the Royal Women’s Hospital, overcoming multiple problems including collapsed lungs and multiple bleeds.

Today, at home in Balwyn, the battler bub is showing her true colours.

“She sleeps soundly by night and is alert and inquisitive by day. She eats to make up for what she has missed out on and is going ahead in leaps and bounds,” Adele said.

She spoke of Elora’s battle in the hope of attracting donations to the hospital’s neonatal and intensive care unit.

The RWH Foundation can be contacted on 9344 2006.



  1. Kathryn October 20, 2007 at 12:13 am -

    How to spot that this article was written by someone without a small child of their own:

    “she is 4.7kg — still half the average weight of four-week-olds”

    Hmmm, I doubt there are many 9.4kg four-week-olds – or even four-month-olds!

  2. Tania Matthews August 3, 2015 at 1:18 am -

    Hi, I was just wanting to know how you find information about yourself. As far as i know i was 14 weeks premature an emergency c section at Manly hospital in september of 1966 in sydney Australia i know a female midwife still remembers me only in 2013, i heard through a distant relative. As my mother has hated me from birth, despite her age of 76 she is still so cruel to me . Anyway i don’t know anything really i have never seen a photo or what day or time i was born or any other circumstances. I have been a blacksheep for life my mother has never been a mother to me and says it is none of my bussiness, still this year, as i am still a good daughter, just not aloud around my family as she keeps them away from me. If someone could cotact me and maybe? let me know any details of my birth i would mean the world to me. I know everything about my children but nothing acout my birth or my siblimgs. Many Thanks Tania

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