A baby who was given just one per cent odds of survival after she was born one week before the abortion limit has defied doctors and is now thriving at eight months old.
Kaci-Rose Crathley was born via an emergency caesarean section at 23 weeks, and weighed just 1lb and 2oz - half the weight of a bag of sugar and measured 10.8 inches.
Doctors warned the tot’s mother, Sadie, 20, that there was a 99% chance her baby would die during delivery - telling her that they would not have tried to save the baby if she had gone into labour one day earlier.
However, Kaci-Rose did survive delivery and now weighs 8lbs - the same as an average newborn baby.
Sadie said she was “terrified” after she went into labour halfway through her pregnancy.
She said: “By the time I got to the hospital I was 4cm dilated. I was quite drugged up but I was terrified.
"We were told there was a one per cent chance of her surviving labour. When they told me that l I just cried and cried.
"The doctors asked us to decide whether we wanted them to try and save her or not.
"They told us that they could try but that she probably wasn’t going to make it.
“It was a terrifying moment but it wasn’t really a decision that needed to be made.”
After Kaci-Rose was successfully delivered in January this year, at Southmead Hospital in Bristol, her chances of survival instantly went up to 25% - but she was immediately put on a ventilator.
She was attached to tubes to help her breathe because her lungs were so tiny and underdeveloped, and was put on medication to help her struggling kidneys.
Sadie explained: "It was scary because she still had all of these machines hooked up to her. There were lots of different wires and tubes attached.
"She was on the ventilator for 11 weeks and I wasn’t able to hold her until after then.
"She also had to have laser eye surgery at about three months because her blood vessels weren’t developing properly.
"The whole six months we were in hospital with her there were so many ups and downs.”
After months of care, Sadie and husband Marc, 27, were finally able to bring Kaci-Rose home in July this year - when the tot weight 6lbs 1oz.
She was still hooked up to a monitor to measure her heart rate and oxygen levels and even now relies on a tube to provide her with oxygen.
Sadie said: "We were told she will probably have cerebral palsy but it is too early to tell yet. We were also told she would be blind and deaf but she can hear and see some things.
"So far she has proved everyone wrong. I’m very thrilled with how far she has come.”
Sadie and Marc are now keen to share their story with other parents to show the world that extremely premature babies can survive.
She said: "I just want to say a big thank you to all the staff and also to other parents that are faced with decisions like this.
"As horrible as it is you must fight for your baby and let them have the chance. Kaci-Rose has proved that it can go well.”
For more information on premature births, visit the NHS website.
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