Yichang doctors save premature baby born at 24 weeks

By Liu Kunin Wuhan and ZHAO RUINAN in Beijing | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-12-06 20:35
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On Monday, doctors in Yichang city of Hubei province successfully discharged a baby girl born at 24 weeks. Her birth weight was 550 grams, and her height was only 30 centimeters. [Photo by Zhang Wei/For chinadaily.com.cn]

On Monday, doctors in Yichang city of Hubei province successfully discharged a baby girl born at 24 weeks. Her birth weight was 550 grams, and her height was only 30 centimeters.

On Aug 1, the mother gave birth to a baby girl at the Affiliated Renhe Hospital of China Three Gorges University at 24 weeks and three days of pregnancy (less than six months of gestation).

She is so small that her legs are as thin as an adult's pinky finger, and her skin is as delicate as a cicada's wings. The medical staff nicknamed her "Little Pea", according to Xiang Jinbo, deputy director of the hospital's neonatology department.

The baby was unable to breathe independently after birth. Doctors immediately performed tracheal intubation and managed to save her life. They then transferred the baby to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and provided her with respiratory, nutritional, and other life support.

The hospital also set up a daily treatment plan and provided round-the-clock monitoring. One month later, on Sept 22, the baby could breathe with non-invasive respiratory support, and her weight reached 1,000 grams.

Thanks to four months of relentless effort from the medical team, the baby has grown. Her weight is 2800 grams, and her height is 48 centimeters.

She was discharged from the hospital on Monday and is in good health.

Yang, the mother of the baby, who only gave her surname, appreciated the care and medical excellence provided to her newborn.

"We are grateful to the doctors and nurses, without whom we wouldn't be here with our baby in good health," she said.

Cases like this are rare. "Little Pea" is the lightest premature infant successfully treated in Yichang.

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