He fit in the hands of an adult, but now weighs 3,238 pounds and feeds normally. The survival rate of premature baby boys is lower than that of girls. Infant mortality in Japan is among the lowest ever.
Tokyo (AsiaNews / Agencies) – His mother had given birth prematurely in the 24th week of pregnancy and he weighed only 268 grams, but after five months of treatment he can finally go home: The smallest newborn in the world is being discharged in safety from a hospital in Tokyo.
The doctors at Keio University Hospital say that when he was born, the baby was so small that he fit into the hands of an adult. At home for a week, he now weighs 3,238kg and feeds normally. “I can only say I'm happy that he has grown this big because honestly, I wasn't sure he could survive," the boy's mother said. Dr. Takeshi Arimitsu, who was in charge of the newborn, wants to let the public know that "there is a possibility that babies will be able to leave the hospital in good health even though they are born small".
The Keio University Hospital believes that the baby now holds the world record for the smallest premature baby to have the all clear from doctors. Quoting a registry created by the University of Iowa (USA), doctors say the record was previously held by a boy born in Germany in 2009 weighing just 274g.The smallest surviving girl was born in Germany in 2015 weighing 252g, according to the registry.
The survival rate of premature baby boys is lower than that of girls. Experts are still not sure why, although some specialists speculate that this may partly depend on the development of the lungs, slower in males. According to UNICEF, Japan has one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world.