Tiny baby born at 23 weeks weighing less than a pound defies the odds to survive and THRIVE

A baby has defied all odds and survived despite being born in the 23rd week, weighing less than a pound.

Credits: Jessica Doxey / SWNS

When Jessica Doxey, a food scientist from Bakersfield, California, was in the 23rd week of her pregnancy, she had to be rushed to a hospital. After medical examination, she was diagnosed with pre-eclampsia, a life-threatening blood condition. The 30-year-old mom then learned she had to undergo an emergency C-section to save her life and that her baby had only a 10% chance of survival.

Оn July 7, 2017, Jessica gave birth to her son Kaio. Because it was only the 23rd week of her pregnancy, he weighed just 435g (15oz). He spent the following six weeks on a ventilator and another two and a half months in an incubator.

Credits: Jessica Doxey / SWNS

The tiny baby boy came home on November 13, the same year. At four months old, he weighed 8lb 15 oz. Speaking to Daily Mail, Kaio’s mom said:

“I’d been in so much pain over the last 72 hours but what kept me going was holding on to the belief that he’d be okay. The C-section took about an hour, and they had to use general anesthetic to perform the surgery.

When I woke up I was really confused, and the doctors explained that Kaio was alive but weighed just 435 grams. They even invited my husband in so we could share what they thought would be our first and last moments with him in case he didn’t make it. But, that thought hadn’t even crossed our mind, and we were determined to save him.”

Credits: Jessica Doxey / SWNS

Doctors asked the mom whether they should save her baby because he was born too early, and there was a big chance he would’ve not made it. 

The 30-year-old mom and her husband, whose name is also Kaio, had already had experience with premature birth. Their oldest child, six-year-old Stella, was born in the 36th week. And although doctors had reassured Jessica this delicate situation would not repeat, the very same thing happened with baby Kaio.

Credits: Jessica Doxey / SWNS

One day, after the mom-of-three developed a severe headache, she was rushed to a hospital, where she was diagnosed with pre-eclampsia. This severe blood condition causes high blood pressure and rejection of the pregnancy, gradually worsening the mother’s state until the baby is born.

Just a few days later, Jessica developed HELP syndrome – a pregnancy complication affecting the blood and liver. She had no other choice but to agree to the C-section.

Thankfully, now four-year-old Kaio is thriving! 

Credits: Jessica Doxey / SWNS

His grateful mother is sharing his story to raise awareness and let other mothers in her situation know that it is not their fault. She said:

“For weeks it felt like it was my fault because it was my body. It felt like my failing and it’s hard to let that go when you’re watching your child suffer. When you’re in that situation, every good thing that happens you’re afraid to enjoy it.

Being at home whist Kaio was in hospital it felt like my heart was in a different place. Often it would be 4am and I’d suddenly panic and feel the need to be with him so I’d rush to the hospital.”

Jessica said the whole family was incredibly thankful to have Kaio home. She added:

“It was the hardest time of our lives, but that feeling of bringing him home was indescribable. Walking through our front door with him in our arms it seemed like everything was right in the world – we are truly grateful.”

Credits: Jessica Doxey / SWNS

Meanwhile, the Mississippi 15-week abortion ban is set to be challenged during a Supreme Court hearing on December 1.

In 2018, the state of Mississippi banned all abortions after 15 weeks. They are only allowed in medical emergencies and fetal abnormalities.

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