This preemie born four months early had to go through major surgery to survive. Having the operation at day six, the little girl is believed to be the world’s youngest patient to survive abdominal surgery.
Her parents shared this scary but miraculous story–born at 23 weeks, this tiny preemie had to go through major surgery within a week of her birth.
Abiageal Peters was born four months early and weighed just 1.3lbs. Fighting against the ordeal as a premature baby, little Abi managed to survive major abdominal surgery six days after her birth.
Little Abiageal Peters is believed to be the world’s youngest patient to survive abdominal surgery.
Described by her parents as “our little miracle,” Abi is considered to be the world’s youngest patient to survive abdominal surgery.
When Abiageal was born, she was put on life support and taken away by the neonatal unit soon after birth–her parents only got a brief time to be with her.
“Once the neonatal team had incubated Abi, we were allowed a quick peek and a kiss before she was rushed off,” said Abi’s mother, Louise Peters, 32, an analyst at Investec Bank.
“It was incredibly scary,” she said. “She just looked so tiny and couldn’t make any noise or open her eyes.”
“Our baby girl was a fighter,” says Abi’s mother.
Abi suffered from a ruptured intestine and was transferred to the neonatal unit at St George’s Hospital in London, where doctors performed the surgery.
Abi was smaller than the hand of her surgeon Zahid Mukhtar, who explained that the chance of success after operating on Abi was less than 10 percent–but the couple had no other choice.
“We agreed to the operation, despite the risks associated with it, as we knew she wouldn’t survive without it,” said Mrs. Peters.
She described that when her baby was under surgery, it seemed the longest three hours for her and her husband, 43, a director at Aecom in London. The couple has another two-year-old daughter, Tara.
Abiageal, the “little miracle,” sleeping soundly with her mom and dad Louise and David, has survived the major abdominal operation.
And finally, the couple were relieved when they saw the expression of the surgeon walking out of the operation room—he was smiling.
“Our baby girl is a fighter. She stayed in the intensive care for a while and overcame many more hurdles, but she kept fighting and we are so pleased with how she is doing today.” The overjoyed mom said. “She truly is our little miracle.”
St George’s Consultant pediatric surgeon, Mr Mukhtar, who led the ten-strong team that performed the hour-long operation on her, explained that the case was unique, but they had no other choice but to perform the operation “because her chances of survival without surgery were so small.”
The surgical team found three ruptures in Abi’s intestine, which caused contamination and infection throughout her abdomen, a serious damage to the gut called perforated necrotising enterocolitis (NEC). They removed a section of her intestine and thoroughly washed her abdomen.
Surgeons removed a section of Abi’s intestine during the surgery. They said an operation to such a little patient was a unique case and the chance for success was less than 10 percent.
“The survival rate for babies born at 23 weeks is very low and Abiageal’s case is remarkable in that sense,” said Mr Mukhtar.
The surgeon said although they would continue to monitor Abi closely, they were optimistic about her future prognosis.
“The fact she survived the operation, and is now doing so well, is fantastic news.”