Born after 21 weeks, US boy breaks Guinness World Record as most premature baby to survive

Curtis Means, a boy from Alabama, the US who weighed only 14.8 ounces (420 grams) at birth, set a new record as the world’s most premature baby. The announcement of the new record was done by Guinness World Records and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) on 10 November, BBC reported.

Curtis Means was delivered in Birmingham and the boy was born at 21 weeks. He was born on July 5, 2020, where his mother gave birth to twins, Curtis and C’Asya. Unfortunately, C’Asya didn’t survive whereas Curtis is now healthy and 16 months old.

C’Asya died a day later. Usually, doctors give special attention to these types of cases and at times, allow them to hold their tiny infants for what little time they may have left together. 

Although there was less than one percent chance of survival, Curtis hold on tight in intensive care. Dr. Brian Sims, who was the attending physician, said statistics show that children born so young have virtually no chance of survival, but Curtis beat the odds.

After seven months Curtis was taken on a ventilator and got discharged in this year April after completing 275 days in the hospital. Though everything went smooth, he needed help from therapists to begin using his mouth and eating.

Doctors say that his health condition is good but needed extra care like supplemental oxygen and a feeding tube.  “I’ve been doing this almost 20 years, but I’ve never seen a baby this young be as strong as he was. There was something special about Curtis,” said neonatologist Doctor Brian Sims of the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

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Guinness team of World Record said Curtis beat by a day the previous record, which held for only a month. Richard Hutchinson, from Wisconsin, was born at a gestational age of 21 weeks, 2 days in June 2020.