An Alabama Boy Makes History as 'World Smallest Premature Baby' Weighing Less Than 1 Pound and Surviving

Mom Michelle Butler holding baby Curtis; Dr. Sims holding baby Curtis
University of Alabama at Birmingham

On July 5, 2020, Curtis Means arrived weighing 14.8 ounces, a report said.

Meet the adorable Curtis Means, born at 21 weeks.

Means was teeny tiny when he was born, weighing under a pound at birth. Sixteen months later Means is thriving, and on Wednesday was certified as “the world’s most premature baby” to survive by the Guinness World Records, according to published reports. 

A full-term pregnancy is typically 40 weeks, Means was born at approximately 19 weeks, 132 days early. 

On July 5, 2020, Means arrived weighing 14.8 ounces, CBS News reported. 

His twin, C’Asya, did not survive and died the day after she was born.

Neonatologist Dr. Brian Sims, the attending physician at the University of Alabama at Birmingham explained that with “extremely preterm births,” there is a less than a one-percent chance of survival.

And, in times likes these, Sims explained that the hospital typically "offers parents compassionate care, allowing them to hold their babies and cherish what little time they may have together," he said.

Means stayed in the ICU fighting to get stronger. During his hospital stay, he was learning how to breathe on his own and using his tiny mouth to eat by a caring team of doctors and nurses.

”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,” Dr. Sims told the Guinness World Records, the BBC reported.

Means was taken off a ventilator after three months and in April was discharged from the hospital after 275 days. Doctors said Means still required supplemental oxygen and a feeding tube, but he was in good health, the news outlet reported.

Like any mother, Means’ mom, Michelle Butler, was overjoyed to finally take her new baby boy home and said she was excited for him to meet his three older siblings, who were all waiting to give him lots of love.

"Being able to finally take Curtis home and surprise my older children with their younger brother is a moment I will always remember,” Butler said in a statement. 

Dr. Sims said that “we do not know what all the future will hold for Curtis since there is no one else like him,” the BBC reported. 

”He started writing his own story the day he was born. That story will be read and studied by many and, hopefully, will help improve the care of premature infants around the world,” Sims said.

The previous record of the ‘world’s most premature baby,” was held by Richard Hutchinson, from Wisconsin, who was born in June 2020, at a gestational 21 week and 2 days, CBS reported.

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