1lb 1oz Baby Born at 23 Weeks Defied The Odds And Survivedby Laura Driver
Aaron Jaklin, now aged two, was born four months early, measuring just 11cms and weighing 1lb 1oz and was given a 20% chance of survival by doctors.
Single-mom Hannah, from Wisconsin, delivered Aaron 16 weeks early after going into premature labour following excess bleeding during pregnancy. Aaron suffered two brain haemorrhages during his birth, resulting in doctors warning Hannah that Aaron could be left in a ‘vegetative state’ with severe disabilities.
Aaron has grown up to be a happy and healthy two-year-old boy with no long term or life-limiting health problems. His mum Hannah said: “I feel bad for saying it but the first time I saw him, I found it hard to look at him. That’s how small he was. It was just that he shouldn’t have been here yet and I was told that if he was to make it, he would be severely disabled or vegetative. When he was born, I had no idea if he was alive or not and it was really traumatic. The odds were completely stacked against him and he was only given a 20% chance of making it. He is a complete miracle, a warrior and the toughest person I have ever met. Aaron has come so far and now is the little boy I dreamt he would be.”
Hannah said she encountered problems with the pregnancy early on and recalls noticing a frequent appearance of leaked fluid. Despite this, Hannah claims all of her regular scans appeared to show nothing of concern. However, Hannah was admitted to the hospital after she began passing blood, sparking worries she was having a miscarriage. Despite the bleeding check-ups by midwives confirmed Aaron was still alive and warned Hannah she would have to give birth early.
Three days later, Aaron was born 23 weeks and five days early and was so small that he was unable to open his eyes for two weeks after birth. Doctors also discovered Aaron had two bleeds on his brain at two days old, leaving him at risk of developing disabilities. Hannah said “The first time I saw him he was in an incubator attached to lots of tubes and I just remember standing there and crying for hours. They found out he had two inter-cranial bleeds which is a common risk for premature babies. I honestly didn’t think he would make it because he was so fragile.”
Aaron went on to spend 112 days in a neonatal intensive care unit before finally being allowed home with his proud mom, Hannah, three days before his initial due date of July 27. He was sent home with a ventilator to help his under-developed lungs work effectively, but amazingly has escaped suffering with any long-lasting illness as doctors warned may happen. Despite Hannah’s delight at Aaron’s remarkable progress, she has said the trauma she went through with the pregnancy and the early weeks of motherhood has left her questioning if she ever wants to have another child. Hannah, who now visits neo-natal intensive care wards to offer support and hope to other mums, said: “We have both fought so hard and it has been a battle. If I’m honest I don’t know if I could go through this ever again. It was too hard and if this happened once then I don’t want to gamble on it happening again. It’d break me mentally and I would be constantly worrying. ‘He has met all of his milestones as normal and he still blows my mind every day. I am so proud of him.”