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World’s smallest baby finally discharged from hospital

The smallest baby in the world weighing just 8.6 ounces (0.05 pounds) is all set to leave the hospital. The baby spent nearly 5 months in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at a private hospital in San Diego, California. Doctors in charge, believe that the child is healthy and fit to be discharged from NICU and travel back home.

The mother had a C-Section after 6 months of pregnancy which meant that the baby was born 17 weeks early than the normal prescribed delivery time. The reason for having the C-Section early was decided by the doctors who felt the mother’s life was at risk.

Smallest Baby in the World?

This is for the very first time in history a baby that small has ever been born. Weighing under 9 ounces and measuring 9 inches long, such a case had never been witnessed before. However, surprisingly enough, the child did not face any of the medical conditions which underweight as pre-delivery babies would normally face.

Dr. Paul Wozinak, a renowned neonatologist, who was looking after the case had some comments to make. According to Dr. Wozinak, it is beyond surprising that the baby was not subjected to any of the medical challenges. A case like this is rare and largely unheard of. More importantly, babies born in similar circumstances fail to survive the medical conditions they are inflicted with.

Even the empirical health data would support the claim. CDC statistics show that babies born in the 23rd week have only a 50% chance of surviving. Between the years 2007 to 2016, 4000 such fatalities were reported. Moving beyond further to look at the mortality rate for premature births, the data would exhibit a similar trend. We know that a normal pregnancy lasts for 9 months or 40 weeks.

Any delivery that occurs before the 32nd week increases the death rate. Nearly 18% of infant deaths were recorded in the year 2015, the cause relating to premature birth. What happens as a consequence is that early deliveries can lead to severe health conditions. For instance, most fatalities occur because of breathing problems and delayed cognitive development.

A Luck Against All Odds

It would not be wrong to say that the survival of the world’s smallest baby is nothing beyond a miracle. The medical past data had made the doctors all the more pessimistic about the chances of surviving. Yet, making it past through 5 months of NICU and being discharged from the hospital is certainly a bit of luck against all odds!

That being said, doctors believe that the baby survived because she was born in the right hospital. Meaning by the place had all the relevant medical facilities that would ensure a healthy life of the child. Since the time she was born, the doctors have critically been analyzing the case doing the best they could to help the baby live long. At the same time, healthy genes also had a big role to play in that regard.

A normal genetic makeup free from any medical complication did well to ensure sustenance. Lastly, doctors also give due credit to the baby’s parents who had been there for their child right from the start.


Areeba Hussain

Areeba is an independent medical and healthcare writer. For the last three years, she is writing for Tophealthjournal. Her prime areas of interest are diseases, medicine, treatments, and alternative therapies. Twitter @Areeba94789300

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