There’s a good reason why people have come to use the colloquialism “a bun in the oven” to describe an unborn baby.
Infants need time to grow, to develop, to “cook” (if you will), and the delivery of a child prior to 38 weeks of gestation can have dire consequences.
Jaksiri Ruiz-Toledo of Miami, Florida, came to know that truth personally when she gave birth on Aug. 12 at only 26 weeks of pregnancy. Indeed, even the doctors at Baptist Children’s Hospital were concerned with just how premature her child was.
“This baby was under-grown due to a lot of complications that mom was having with her pregnancy,” Baptist Children’s Hospital Chief of Pediatrics Dr. Andrew Kairalla told WSVN.
But his colleague Dr. Ernesto Valdes was a bit more blunt in assessing the situation.
“When I’ve been faced with situations like this, I’m a little concerned that can I turn this baby around depending on how the conditions are at the time of the delivery,” he said, and his worry wasn’t without reason.
When Ruiz-Toledo delivered her daughter Lailie, the tiny girl weighed a mere 13 ounces — only a shade more than a full can of soda.
Ruiz-Toledo and her husband Marcos knew that they had a tough road ahead of them.
“She was so small, I hoped but I really didn’t know if she was gonna make it through the first day,” Marcos explained to CBS Miami.
Medical literature documents numerous instances of very premature infants surviving at 26 weeks gestation.
One case from Germany even saw a baby at 21 weeks and five days of development.
But size matters with premature babies, and few weighing less than 14 ounces ever make it. “From the history I was getting from prior ultrasounds I knew she was coming small,” Ruiz-Toledo told WTVJ.
“I was concerned, but at the same time I didn’t lose hope. I knew God was there for us.”
Her hope didn’t disappoint. After spending a full four months in Baptist Hospital, little Lailie will finally get to go home.
Her case is one for the history books. Kairalla says that children as small as Lailie rarely make it at his hospital — or any hospital.
“This is going to be the best new year that we’re going to have,” Ruiz-Toledo said. “It’s going to be great and unique because it’s going to be her first New Year.”
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