Youngest Premature Baby to Survive

8 Youngest Premature Baby to Survive in History

A premature birth is when a baby is born before their expected date of delivery, usually three weeks. In other words, a baby born before 37 weeks of gestation is called a premature baby.

A premature birth is associated with multiple health problems. These health problems could be acute (for example, Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome [ARDS] where the baby struggles to breathe properly), or they might be chronic. In such cases, the baby might require frequent and immediate hospitalizations.

Although premature babies are more at risk for serious health complications and death, premature birth is not always bad. There have been multiple instances where premature babies have not only survived the acute problems of a premature birth, but have also gone on to live a long, healthy life.

Here are the top 8 youngest premature babies to survive.

8. Madeline Mann

Year born: 1989
Age at birth: 26 weeks gestation
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 9.9 ounces / 0.61 pounds / 280.6 grams

Madeline Mannphoto source: cbsnews.com

Madeline Mann is one of the youngest premature babies to survive. She also weighed just 9.9 ounces at birth, making her the smallest baby to have ever been born at the time. However, this record has since been broken, and Madeline now sits at the fourth spot in the list of smallest babies to have ever been born

Madeline was born to Leslie Mann through an emergency C-section, which was initiated due to a sudden hemorrhage caused by a condition known as pre-eclampsia.

Despite her prematurity at birth, Madeline Mann has survived longer than predicted by many doctors, and continues to live a healthy life with few health conditions.

Did You Know?

Despite being a very premature baby, the only health condition that Madeline suffers from asthma. She does not have any other lasting conditions, and she lives a relatively healthy life.


7. Rumaisa Rehman

Year born: September 2004
Age at birth: 25 weeks, 6 days gestation
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 9.2 ounces / 0.57 pounds / 260.8 grams

Rumaisa Rehmanphoto source: verywellfamily.com

Rumaisa Rehman is the seventh youngest premature birth to have ever survived, and also the smallest baby to have ever been born, weighing just 9.2 oz. at birth!

Rumaisa was born at the Loyola University Medical Center to her mother, who had to undergo emergency C-section surgery due to complications caused by pre-eclampsia. Interestingly, Rumaisa is a twin, and both she and her twin survived the traumatic premature birth.

Being a twin, Rumaisa was even more malnourished at the time of her birth as compared to a single premature baby. However, despite her traumatic experience, Rumaisa has survived longer than expected. She continues to live a generally healthy life to this day.

Did You Know?

Due to her premature birth and the fact that she was born a twin, Rumaisa still struggles to maintain a normal weight for her age. She also had to get laser eye surgery for a condition caused by her premature birth, called the Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP).


6. Melinda Star Guido

Year born: 2011
Age at birth: 24 weeks gestation
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 9.5 ounces / 0.59 pounds / 269.3 grams

Melinda Star Guidophoto source: cbsnews.com

Melinda Star, born in August of 2011, was only 9.5 ounces at birth. She was born early because her mother had to get an emergency C-section due to pregnancy-induced hypertension.

At the time of her birth, Melinda Star was the second-youngest child to be born in the United States. She was also the third-youngest child to survive long enough to leave the hospital after birth.

Melinda suffered some injuries from her premature birth. She was diagnosed with Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia (BPD), and had to undergo surgery for other conditions, as well. Despite her bumpy start in the world, Melinda continues to live a relatively healthy life.

Did You Know?

Melinda finally left the hospital 16 weeks after being born, and weighed only 4.5 pounds at the time of discharge.


5. Kenna Moore

Year born: 2012
Age at birth: 24 weeks gestation
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 9.6 ounces / 0.6 pounds / 272.1 grams

Kenna Moorephoto source: huffpost.com

Kenna Moore is the fifth youngest baby to have ever survived a premature birth. Kenna weighed so little at the time of birth that she was actually smaller than a soda can!

Born in January, 2012, Kenna Moore was delivered through an emergency LSCS because her mother had suffered complications resulting from high blood pressure during her pregnancy.

Kenna was also delivered after only 24 weeks of gestation and, therefore, faced several health problems at the time of her birth. However, her resilience helped her power through her conditions, and she miraculously survived her ordeal without major complications.

Kenna remained in the hospital for 183 days under intense, constant monitoring. She finally left the Presbyterian Hemby Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, N.C. after 183 days, with a feeding tube inserted to aid in feeding.

Did You Know?

Kenna’s mother, Nicki, wrote a book chronicling her journey with her premature daughter called, Keeping Up With Kenna. It is available on Amazon.


4. Amilia Taylor

Year born: 2006
Age at birth: 21 weeks & 6 days
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 10 ounces / 0.625 pounds / 283.4 grams

photo source: newscientist.com

Amilia Taylor was born premature in October, 2006, due to some pregnancy-related complications that her mother faced while she was pregnant.

Amilia was conceived through In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF), which is a technique that couples use who struggle with conceiving a baby through natural means. Babies born through this method are also called “test tube” babies, since the products of conception are essentially created in a test tube.

Due to Amilia’s mode of conception, her age of gestation cannot be determined exactly.

Amilia, like many other premature babies, endured complications in her first few months of life. However, none of the complications proved insurmountable, and Amilia currently lives a healthy life.

Did You Know?

Although not presently saddled with any long-term complications, Amilia needed a breathing tube when she was born, and was only slightly longer than a ballpoint pen.


3. James Eldin Gill

Year born: 1987
Age at birth: 21 weeks gestation
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 14.8 ounces / 0.925 pounds / 419.5 grams

James Eldin Gillphoto source: liveaction.org

James Eldin Gill was born in May of 1987. Born after just 21 weeks of gestation, his birth was so premature that he was expected to die instantaneously after being born.

James’ mother had had an uneventful pregnancy up to the time of his birth, when suddenly she had to be rushed to the hospital for pregnancy-related complications. James weighed only 14.8 oz. at birth – the same weight as a soccer ball! However, to everyone’s surprise, he survived. Not only that, he went on to live a healthy life, and is alive and well to this day.

Did You Know?

James held the record of being the most premature baby to survive at birth at the time when he was born.


2. Richard Hutchinson

Year born: 2020
Age at birth: 21 weeks gestation
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 11.9 ounces / 0.74 pounds / 337.3 grams

Richard Hutchinsonphoto source: abc.net.au

Born on June 5, 2020, Richard Hutchinson is the second youngest premature child to ever survive, though he does currently hold the Guinness Record for the most premature baby to survive. He weighed less than a pound at birth, and was born after just 21 weeks and 2 days of gestation. He was so weak and small that the doctors assumed he had a 0% chance of survival.

Richard was born with so many complications that the odds were bleak for his survival. His parents, Rick and Beth Hutchinson, could not stay with their premature son at the hospital due to the pandemic situation, so both parents made daily trips to the Children’s Hospital Minnesota from their home in Wisconsin.

The parents believed that these daily trips to the hospital meant that their son would know that he has his parents to count on. These moments of belief gave everyone hope, and it was worth it. Richard was discharged after six long months on December 4th, 2020.  

Did You Know?

Richard was so premature at birth that he was born without fully developed lungs – he had small pockets of air instead. This, among many other reasons, was why doctors originally gave him a 0% chance of survival.


1. Curtis Means

Year born: 2020
Age at birth: 21 weeks gestation
Survived?: Yes
Weight at birth: 14.8 ounces / 0.925 pounds / 419.5 grams

Curtis Meansphoto source: guinnessworldrecords.com

Curtis Zy-Keith Means is the youngest premature baby to survive. He was born just one month after the previous youngest premature baby, Richard Hutchinson.

Born at the gestational age of 21 weeks and 1 day, Curtis was so small that he could fit in the palm of his parents’ hands, and weighed only 14.8 ounces at birth. He was also a twin and, therefore, he was much more malnourished at birth than a single premature baby of his age would have been. Sadly, his sister, C’Asya, did not respond to the treatment she received after birth, and passed away a day later.

Curtis spent about nine months in the Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (RNICU) after which he was safely discharged.

Did You Know?

Curtis officially holds the Guinness World Record for the most premature baby in the world to survive.

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