World’s Youngest Premature Baby Survives at 21 Weeks

Added by on April 28, 2011

The youngest premature baby ever to survive has been born in Germany after only 21 weeks and five days in the womb, a German hospitals says.

Frieda was born on November 7 last year. At birth she weighed only 460g and measured 28cm.

According to the clinic in western Fulda, where Frieda was born, she represented a world record in premature births: “In the specialist literature, other premature babies have been lighter than her at birth, some even less than 300 grammes, but there is no mention of a premature baby even younger than Frieda.”

Her twin brother died a few days after birth.

In generally assumed that babies born before the 22nd week of pregnancy do not stand a chance at survival because their heart, brain and lungs are not yet fully developed.

Professor Reinald Repp, director of the paediatric clinic where Frieda was born told the Bild newspaper that “Frieda was kept in a completely sterile environment, with her breathing assisted and fed through her navel.”

Babies born before eight months of pregnancy are considered premature, and those born before 32 weeks very premature. Such babies are at high risk of suffering from developmental problems.

Frieda was discharged on Wednesday, measuring in at 50 cm and weighing 3.5 kg.

Although Dr. Repp was not available for comment, a doctor on duty said that “there is no foreseeable risk of after-effects for the moment” and that Frieda “should develop normally like any other child.”