Baby Manushi was smaller than an adult hand and weighed less than a bar of chocolate when she was born. But the little fighter survived against the odds; her story is incredible, and it’s been inspiring the world since her birth in June of 2017.
Seeta, a 48-year-old expectant mom from Rajasthan, India, was 28 weeks pregnant when her blood pressure reached a dangerous high. It was too early for her baby to be born, but doctors at Jivanta Children’s Hospital in Udaipur had no choice but to concentrate their efforts and try for the sake of both mother and baby.
Happy couple !!#BeAmother #BeAfather #Manushi #Smallestbaby#neelkanthivfcentre #bestivfcenter #fertility #udaipur…
Gynecologist Dr. Vimla Jain told the Deccan Herald that “babies who are born weighing under 500 grams (approx. 1 pound) have less chance of survival.” Seeta’s ultrasound revealed that blood flow was not reaching the placenta and her baby girl’s life was at huge risk, so neonatal doctors were forced into a risky decision.
They performed an emergency cesarean section on June 15, 2017. The baby girl’s arrival stunned the medical team in the delivery room. She was impossibly small but perfectly formed; she weighed only 400 grams (approx. 14 ounces) and was just 21 centimeters long, less than half the normal, healthy length of a newborn.
Manushi was given zero chance of survival, but she defied the odds. What a fighter!
When Manushi was born, her translucent skin was paper thin and she wasn’t breathing on her own. A baby’s lungs usually mature in the thirty-fourth week of pregnancy. But Manushi’s family, fueled by faith and determination, moved the baby girl to the intensive care unit to be connected to an artificial respiration machine.
Seeta was immediately moved to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), where Dr. Sunil Janged could keep a close eye on her and the newborn. “When the baby was born,” Dr. Janged told the Hindustan Times, “we were uncertain of what could happen.” But one look down at baby Manushi’s feet told a different story.
— The Independent (@Independent) January 13, 2018
This baby was more ready for the world than the naysayers believed. Her feet were no bigger than each of her 50-year-old father Giriraj’s fingertips, but upon close inspection, each foot was immaculately formed; the heel, pad, and toes were already perfectly sculpted despite her premature birth.
The photos are breathtaking.
After a few days out in the “real world,” Manushi began digesting a small amount of milk. After four and a half months of consistent, healthy growth, she was drinking milk from a spoon. “The biggest challenge for our team was to prevent any infection to the baby, and our team managed it very well,” Dr. Janged regaled.
Dr. Ajay Gambhir, former president of the Neonatology Forum of India, added a sobering shout-out to Manushi’s dedicated family. “We appreciate [the family] for setting a new example to the community,” he said. In Rajasthan, the doctor continued, baby girls are often still considered a burden. Shockingly, they are sometimes “thrown into the trash immediately after birth, or are left in the orphanage,” the doctor revealed.
Baby Manushi is a poster child for survival. “All girls should be protected,” Dr. Janged asserted. It is fervently hoped among Manushi’s family and the Jivanta Children’s Hospital that Manushi’s case will help improve the climate for baby girls in India.
World’s smallest baby #Manushi when come to meet us such a joyous moment for Neelkanth Fertility Hospital & Manushi as well.
— Neelkanth Fertility (@indiafertility) January 30, 2018
According to The Independent, at 6 months of age, Manushi weighed in at a triumphant 5.2 pounds (approx. 2.4 kg) and was finally able to go home. Manushi’s doctors, out of respect for her extraordinary survival against the odds, even waived the back-breaking hospital fee of approximately 1 million rupees (approx. US$14,420).
Seeta and Giriraj have been married for 35 years, and Manushi remains a blessed miracle to their family. “She fought and fought and struggled against all odds,” Seeta shared, joyfully. “And she made it.”