At a time when the girl child is unwanted and even killed before she is born, here is the case of a premature girl baby born with extreme low birth weight (just 700 gm) who was nurtured back to health by doctors at the State-run Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital.

Three months early

Sayeeda Hafize Jamaal, just under three months, is the second child of Tayab Pasha, a salesman in a garment store in Shivajinagar, and Ruheena Taj, residents of K.G. Halli here. The baby was born at Bowring Hospital on April 25 three months premature (at six months and four days of gestation). Following the care and treatment by doctors at Bowring hospital, she is now just over a kilo.

Chikkanarasappa Reddy, Assistant Professor of Paediatrics, and Vijaylakshmi Gagandeep, neonatologist, told The Hindu this the first time that they had seen a baby with such low birth weight.

Tough to survive

“Initially, we were worried as she lost weight from 700 grams to 400 grams by the 14th day. While it is common for newborns to lose weight in the first two weeks of birth, usually babies with such low birth weight don’t survive. But we did our best to nurture her to health,” said Dr. Reddy.

Ms. Taj, who said she has been living in the hospital for the last three months, can’t wait for her baby to be discharged as her year-old son Nyamat Pasha also needs care. “I had jaundice during the initial days of pregnancy. I think the baby was born premature because of the medicines. But I am happy now that she has improved. Doctors have advised that I should take utmost care till she gains 1.5 kg. I will follow their advice strictly,” she said.

Dr. Vijaylakshmi said the baby’s weight kept fluctuating and started to stabilise only in the last two weeks. “Premature babies are prone to infections. This one too was born with several infections. Apart from neonatal jaundice, she was anaemic and her platelet count was also very low. Initially, we administered intravenous fluids; now the baby is able to swallow milk. We are feeding her with an [olali] (modified baby feeder),” she said. “Although we wanted to keep her till the weight increases to 1.8 kg, the parents insisted on her discharge,” Dr. Vijaylakshmi added.

And sure enough, baby Sayeeda was discharged on Thursday evening.

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