Parenthood
World’s tiniest preemie comes home at 8.6 ounces and beats all the odds
Saybie was born just after spending 23 weeks in her mother's womb and she's been breaking records ever since. This baby's strength is incredible.
Kate Miano
10.18.21

Babies come in all sizes, but only one baby is the world’s smallest baby.

In Southern California, in 2019, the world’s smallest baby was born. Her extremely early birth and her far smaller-than-usual size put her at low chances of survival.

But she surprised everyone by surviving and becoming a healthy baby.

Due to complications that risked the mother’s health, she had to have an emergency C-section about halfway through her pregnancy.

Although this procedure was necessary, the mother remembers that she told doctors her baby would not survive.

YouTube - Sharp HealthCare
Source:
YouTube - Sharp HealthCare

The doctors agreed with the mother’s assessment of the situation. After the C-section was over and the baby was born, the doctors advised the parents that they only had about an hour with their baby.

The baby’s mother describes her harrowing birth.

Pexels - Thiago Borges
Source:
Pexels - Thiago Borges

In a video from Sharp Mary Birch Hospital, the hospital where the baby was born, the mother recounts her experience giving birth:

“It was the scariest day of my life. I just felt very uncomfortable, and I thought ‘maybe this is part of the pregnancy.’ They told me that I had preeclampsia, my blood pressure was very very high, over 200, and we had to deliver her really quick.”

She immediately became the world’s smallest baby.

YouTube - Sharp HealthCare
Source:
YouTube - Sharp HealthCare

At the time of her birth, she weighed only 8.6 ounces.

This baby was born 23 weeks into the pregnancy.

That is extremely premature and her chances of survival were quite low. She was not only a preemie but a micro-preemie.

YouTube - Sharp HealthCare
Source:
YouTube - Sharp HealthCare

Despite the chances of survival being quite low, the nurses at the NICU nicknamed her Saybie. The name stuck.

At the very beginning of her life, Saybie defied the odds.

While everyone was bracing themselves for Saybie to die, the baby fought on. Although the doctors estimated that she would only live for an hour, she was stronger than people realized.

YouTube - Sharp HealthCare
Source:
YouTube - Sharp HealthCare

Saybie lived in the NICU for the first five months of her life, but after that, she was allowed to go home.

Weighing only five pounds, she went to her new home with her parents.

Watching Saybie growing and getting stronger in the NICU was a huge experience for her primary nurses as well.

YouTube - Sharp HealthCare
Source:
YouTube - Sharp HealthCare

Working in the neonatal intensive care unit is an intense job.

The nurses who worked with Saybie put in an immense amount of care and effort into not only helping to support the baby’s growth but also to provide a positive atmosphere for Saybie and her parents.

They made posters commemorating Saybie’s growth milestones, and wishing her mother a happy birthday.

YouTube - Sharp HealthCare
Source:
YouTube - Sharp HealthCare

While speaking on video, many of the nurses started tearing up talking about their experience working with Saybie. One of them said:

“I’m just really proud of them and the baby and to see…them transform as parents. And just like see this little baby go home that is usually completely against all odds.”

When Saybie finally got to go home, everyone celebrated.

YouTube - Sharp HealthCare
Source:
YouTube - Sharp HealthCare

After 5 months, Saybie had her NICU graduation. The nurses and Saybie’s parents agreed that they needed to celebrate this date.

So, the nurses dressed Saybie up in a little graduation cap and made it a day nobody would forget. She was 5.6 pounds and ready to take on the world.

Learn more about the miracle that is Saybie in the touching video below!

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By Kate Miano
hi@sbly.com
Kate Miano is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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