Despite All Odds, One-Pound Baby Survives
A baby born at 22 weeks and weighing only one pound and four ounces reached stability Monday after defying the odds of surviving.
Austin Douglas of England was born so early that his skin was translucent, organs visible, and ears and lungs undeveloped. He is the first baby to be born so early, weigh so little and survive.
Most full-term babies are born around 40 weeks, which means Douglas was only half way through full development when he was born.
Despite being only part way through the length of a normal pregnancy, his mother gave birth naturally at Leicester General.
“I knew something wasn’t right and on the morning of the day he was born, I felt an incredible urge to push. I went straight to the hospital and they said I was fully dilated so there was nothing that could be done to stop him from coming… He’s been fighting since day one,” the mother told Leicester Mercury.
She added that the “medical staff whisked him away and put him in an incubator while they worked on him beside my bed. It was terrifying but I knew he needed intervention.”
The baby was taken to Birmingham Heartlands Hospital where he remained for seven weeks receiving care. Twice he contracted a lung infection but pulled through both times.
Douglas is now at Leicester Royal Infirmary and stable. Jonathan Cusack, consultant neonatologist at Leicester’s Hospitals said: “We are pleased with how well Austin is doing at present given how premature he was at birth — he has clearly shown he is a fighter. However he remains on a lot of support and still has a long way to go.”
Helen and Rhys hope to take their child home by July 28, the date on which he was supposed to be born.
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