MOBILE, Ala. - What may be the world's smallest baby is going home soon fromthe University of South Alabama Children's and Women'sHospital.
Oliviyanna Harbin-Page was born on August 5, 2009, weighing only8.6 ounces (259 grams). That's one gram less than the currentrecord holder,
"It's unusual that a child is born that small, when I say thatsmall we are looking at weight and not gestational age," said ReneeRogers, nurse manager in the neonatal intensive care unit.
Oliviyanna is the smallest of a set of triplets born at 24 weeksgestation to Ms. Harbin and Robert Page Jr.
"It's a miracle," Page said. "Three beautiful girls, and I'mvery proud to be their father."
Oriyanna weighed 1 pound, 4 ounces and Tayvanna weighed 1 pound,5 ounces. Her two sisters have already gone home, and she will bejoining them soon. All three babies are in good health.
"She has no specific risks for a bad outcome," Dr. Charles Hamm,professor of neonatal-perinatal medicine at the University of SouthAlabama College of Medicine and one of the hospital'sneonatologists who has been caring for Oliviyana, said. "Like allpremature babies, her health will be fragile for the next couple ofyears and there is always some risk for long-term challenges."
Oliviyanna's parents had no idea she might be a record setteruntil, out of curiosity, they did an internet search a few weeksago.
"The smaller you are, the greater the risk,"Hamm said."Fourtunately, we've seen an explosion in the understanding of theunique physiology and pathology of premature babies. We havetherapeutic agents we didn't have in the past, and everything fromrespirators to isolettes has gotten smaller to accommodate theseinfants."
USA Children's & Women's Hospital annually delivers nearly3,000 babies, more than any hospital in Mobile. The hospital'sneonatal intensive care unit treats about 1,000 babies eachyear.
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