World’s lightest and youngest surviving baby was born just after 21 weeks and six days in the womb and weighed less than 10oz!
This baby was named Amillia Taylor. When she arrived, she only measured 9.5in (24cm). She was considered a miracle baby since the doctors consider that babies who weigh less than 14.1oz (400g) have no chance of survival and no infant born before 23 weeks has ever survived before her.
The picture of a barely visible tender, new born baby circulating online comes with a message stating she is the world’s lightest, youngest and also most premature baby to have survived – born just after 21 weeks and six days gestation. Yes, it is a fact, but has some misinformation.
The picture that shows two tiny, almost translucent brown-pink feet, through fingers of an adult is Amillia Taylor, who was born in Miami on 24 October 2006 just after 21 weeks and six days of conception in her mother’s womb. The miracle child who went on to survive premature birth was just 9½ inches long and weighed less than 10oz at birth – less than the weight of two ordinary bars of soap.
After failing to conceive naturally, Sonja and her husband Eddie Taylor sought to In vitro fertilization (IVF). Post the successful IVF cycle in June 2006, 37-year-old teacher Sonja Taylor became pregnant and was due to deliver her baby on 4 March 2007. However, her pregnancy was fraught with problems from the beginning; she also suffered cervical abnormalities and infections.
During 18 weeks pregnancy, Sonja fell ill and uncomfortable, when ultrasound scan revealed that she was in premature labor. She was under treatment for three weeks before giving birth to her baby.
Lie that Helped
In Florida, it is illegal for doctors to attempt to revive a baby before 24 weeks. In fact, according to the American Association of Pediatrics, babies born before 23 weeks are not considered “viable”. At 19 weeks, a doctor who looked at her scan said the baby was too big. He added that the dates are wrong, and the baby is 21 weeks. This is when Sonja and her husband accepted what the doctor considered and lied about the actual age of baby — thinking the doctors would fight to save the baby as soon as they thought she was 24 weeks.
Three weeks later, at the ‘official’ age of 23 weeks and six days, the baby Amillia’s feet stuck out of the birth canal. Considering the baby cannot take the trauma of a natural birth, doctors performed Caesarean immediately.
The doctors did not think the premature baby would survive. At first, they told her parents to take it hour by hour, then day by day. Because, in babies born before 22 weeks, their lungs, heart and brain are not sufficiently developed and so the chances of survival are rare. Amillia needed oxygen at hospital discharge, was anemic, and has mild osteopenia, but against all odds, she miraculously survived to become a normal, healthy little girl. In the Image below, you can see Amillia snuggled in her mother Sonja’s arms when she weighed a healthy 6lb 140z.
For the Record
Although Amillia Taylor is lightest and youngest surviving baby recorded, but the part of the message suggesting she is the most premature baby ever to have survived is not a fact. As mentioned by Guinness World Records on their official Facebook page, the most premature baby was James Elgin Gill, born to Brenda and James Gill on 20 May 1987 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. James was born premature at 128 days (21 weeks and five days), and he weighed 624 g (1 lb 6 oz). However, on 7 November 2010, a German baby Frieda Mangold equaled the James’ record of 21 weeks and five days in the womb, and she measured 11 inches (28 centimeters), weighing only one pound (460 grammes).
Note that apart from the aforementioned cases, there can be others that are not recorded. These records aside, the birth of a baby is a miracle in itself where a mother gives life to a new being on this earth.
Hoax or Fact:
Fact with some misinformation.