A premature baby born weighing only 1lb 10oz challenged the odds of celebrating her first birthday – despite being so small on arrival, she was kept alive in a FREEZER BAG.
Baby Miracle Amina was so small and fragile when she was born 16 weeks before the doctors had to improvise by putting her in a transparent plastic bag – which mimicked her mother's womb – to keep her warm.
She had an open heart valve that did not close and a bleeding in the brain, but after spending 76 days in the hospital, the girl was able to go home in Chicago, Illinois with her loving parents.
Mum Taylor Dobson, a 24-year-old beautician, said: "We think Amina may not be able to, so being here celebrating her first birthday is so special and we feel so lucky.
"When she was born, it was a terrible time. She was so small.
"She has gone through so much – she is our little miracle."
Amina was born at 24 weeks and four days on February 23, 2018, after an emergency cesarean section.
Taylor said, "She was born early because of having an incompetent cervix.
"The night before Amina's birth, I was admitted to the work ward and said I was having contractions, but that they would try to stop them using magnesium in the next 24 hours.
"They assured me that this should prevent the work process from happening.
"I was hospitalized at about 5 pm and my contractions kept getting closer all night.
"At nine in the morning, my doctor came in and did an ultrasound of Amina saying she was really kicking herself out of my cervix.
"They told me that I had an infection and that she needed to be delivered immediately by emergency cesarean section or I would risk taking her too."
"I was at the operating table getting my epidural and praying that she would survive and be well.
"I remember looking at the metal light above me and seeing her reflection as they pulled her out of me, she did not cry or make a sound.
"It was immediately taken from me and connected to wires, monitors, and breathing tubes.
"It was put in the plastic bag to keep her warm because it helps mimic her mother's uterus and was transferred to the NICU."
Taylor and her partner, Dahoud Maizer, were unable to see their newborn until it stabilized.
She said, "In the first three days of her life, I could not see her, much less touch her or hold her.
"On the fourth day I held my baby for the first time skin-to-skin. It was the most incredible sensation in the world.
"Amina spent five days intubating with a fan before moving to a CPAP breathing machine.
"After she was on CPAP, I was able to hold her and skin the skin every day. I would make sure she went to the hospital at least twice, sometimes three or four times a day.
"Amina did amazingly well in her early days – they call it the" honeymoon phase, "where things can look pretty good, so go bad."
The family was giving devastating news that her daughter had a PDA – an open valve in her heart that was not closing – due to being so premature and a brain bleed in the second stage of the left side that was not healing after delivery.
Taylor said: "Doctors kept an eye on their PDA and brain bleeding and within a couple of months they both healed on their own.
"The last few steps before she could return home was to make her breathe and eat alone.
"She exceeded the expectations of doctors and nurses and breathed and fed herself a month before her due date.
"I was not expecting to get into ICU one day and the nurses told me that in a few days my baby would be ready to go home – she was only 34 weeks pregnant at the time.
"She came home at 35 weeks gestation and it was only £ 7oz.
"Since she's been at home, she's thrived in every possible way.
"Amina no longer needs to consult a cardiologist, an optimist or any specialist doctor.
"She is now almost as healthy as she can be."
Why is premature birth so dangerous?
A term pregnancy is considered anything from 37 weeks, but eight out of 100 babies are born prematurely.
Premature birth is anything before the 37th week, and premature babies will need special care and support as they are not yet fully developed.
There are three categories for preterm infants: those born under 28 weeks are extremely premature; between 28 and 32 weeks is very premature; and anything between 32 and 37 weeks is moderate to late.
One of the most premature babies to be born and to survive is Amillia Taylor, born in 2007.
Amillia defied all odds when she was born with just 21 weeks, weighing less than 10 ounces and only nine and a half in length.
She was born two weeks before the legal deadline for abortion, which is 24 weeks.
For babies born less than 22 weeks, the survival rate is effectively zero.
At 23 weeks, it increases to 23% at 24 weeks, 40%, and at 25 weeks it is 66%, reaching 77% at 26 weeks.
There are a lot of risks associated with being born so early, since the organs and systems of the babies are not yet fully formed.
They may have health problems and development, since they have not developed enough in the womb.
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