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21 Weeks Infant Breaks Guinness World Record For Most Premature Baby To Survive

21 Weeks Infant Breaks Guinness World Record For Most Premature Baby To Survive

21 Weeks Infant Breaks Guinness World Record For Most Premature Baby To Survive

21 Weeks Infant Breaks Guinness World Record For Most Premature Baby To Survive

Medical Doctors are amazed at the survival of the baby that has broken a Guinness world record as the most premature infant ever to survive. With jus a 1% chance of survival, Curtis Means and his twin, C’Asya, were both born 19 weeks premature from their mother, Michelle Butler, on July 5, 2020, at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital.

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The day after their delivery, C’Asya died. But Means remained alive, weighing 420 grams (14.8 ounces), making world history being born 132 days premature.

The average development period in which a mother carries an embryo and later a fetus is 40 weeks or 280 days. Means was born at 21 weeks and one day — or 148 days —  according to the Guinness World Records website.

21 Weeks Infant Breaks Guinness World Record For Most Premature Baby To Survive

“There was something special about Curtis,” Dr. Brian Sims, a 20-year medical professional who oversaw the birth, told Guinness in a video posted to YouTube last week. “I’ve never seen a baby this young be as strong as he was.”

The co-director of the UAB Hospital Golden Week Program — which specializes in care for extremely preterm infants — Dr. Colm Travers told Guinness that Means needed a lot of breathing support and medication for his heart and lungs to keep him alive.

Over the weeks, doctors were able to decrease the amount of support he needed.

“The first thing that struck me when I saw Curtis was how tiny he was, how fragile his skin was,” Travers recounted. “I was amazed at such a young age that he was alive and that he was responding to the treatments.”

At three months, doctors took Means off of the ventilator.

He was able to go home in April 2021 as a 9-month-old after 275 days in the neonatal intensive care unit.

“Survival at this gestational age has never happened before,” Travers said. “So before Curtis was born, his chances of survival would have been less than 1%.”

21 Weeks Infant Breaks Guinness World Record For Most Premature Baby To Survive

Sims praised Butler for being the “champion” for her baby.

“She spoke up for her baby and I am so thankful that we listened to her,” Sims said.

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Butler also shared with The New York Post that her nickname for her record-making baby has been “Poodle.” She jokingly said he is wearing her out.

“I’m tired already,” she told The New York Post.

Means celebrated his first birthday on July 5, 2021.

Before Means, the previous baby who held the same Guinness world record was Wisconsin’s Richard Hutchinson. Hutchinson had been born a month before Means at 21 weeks (131 days premature) on June 5, 2020. Before both Means and Hutchinson, the record was held for over three decades by James Elgin Gill, who was born 128 days premature in 1987.

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21 Weeks Infant Breaks Guinness World Record

Population Reference Bureau (PRB) report states that over 14% of black women have premature births compared to 9% of white women. The organization contends that “racism-related stress may help explain why Black women in the United States are over 50 per cent more likely to deliver a premature baby than white women.”

“The stress can be related to interpersonal interactions like feeling socially isolated, getting passed over for a promotion, or being called racist labels, and to institutional discrimination, such as living in unhealthy neighborhoods or receiving inadequate medical care,” said Catherine Cubbin from the University of Texas at Austin.

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