US baby born at 23 weeks becomes smallest baby to survive

Baby Saybie
Baby Saybie Photo credit: Facebook/ Sharp Mary Birch Hospital

A baby girl has become the smallest micro-preemie baby to survive - she weighed just 245 grams at birth.

When baby Saybie was born at 23 weeks in December, doctors told her parents they would only have an hour with her before she died.

She weighed about the same as an apple.

"But that hour turned into two hours, which turned into a day which turned into a week," said Saybie's mother in a video released by Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women and Newborns.

The San Diego Hospital confirmed Saybie is the smallest baby to survive, according to the official Tiniest Baby Registry which is maintained by the University of Iowa.

Baby Saybie at five months old
Baby Saybie at five months old Photo credit: Facebook/ Sharp Mary Birch Hospital

She weighed seven grams less than the previous smallest baby, who was born in Germany in 2015, reports CNN.

"After experiencing severe pregnancy complications, Saybie's mother gave birth via emergency cesarean section at 23 weeks, three days gestation in the womb," Sharp Mary Birch Hospital said in a press conference. 

"Doctors said the preterm birth was necessary after they found that the baby was not gaining weight and her mother's life was at immediate risk."

Five months on, Saybie is a healthy baby and is leaving the hospital.

Her family gave the hospital permission to share their story, but wished to remain anonymous.