A baby believed to be the world’s smallest at birth has been allowed to go home after 13 months in hospital.
Kwek Yu Xuan was born in Singapore at just 212g (7.47oz) – the equivalent of the weight of an apple – and was only 24cm long.
She was born prematurely at just under 25 weeks, Yahoo News reports.
Her mother, Wong Mei Ling , gave birth by emergency C-section four months early after being diagnosed with pre-eclampsia – high blood pressure that can be fatal for mother and baby.
She was born on 9 June, 2020, at Singapore’s National University Hospital.
In a statement, the hospital said, “Against the odds, with health complications present at birth, she has inspired people around her with her perseverance and growth, which makes her an extraordinary ‘COVID-19’ baby – a ray of hope amid turmoil.”
Yu Xuan still has chronic lung disease and will need help with her breathing at home, but doctors say her condition is expected to improve with time.
Her parents were able to pay for her year-long hospital stay through a crowdfunding campaign that raised almost £200,000.
The hospital said Yu Xuan’s stay in its neonatal intensive care unit “was not always smooth sailing”, and that she had to “rely on multiple treatments and machines for survival, and she responded positively to the medical care and treatment”.
She was discharged from hospital on 9 July this year and went home with her parents, mother Wong Mei Ling and father Kwek Wee Liang.
The hospital said, “She currently has chronic lung disease and pulmonary hypertension – two conditions commonly associated with extreme prematurity.
“She is expected to get better with time.”
Her mother, who worked remotely while her daughter was in hospital, said: “We are very grateful to the doctors and nurses of the NUH NICU team for the attentive and wonderful medical care and treatment of Yu Xuan.
“We would like to express our thanks to the crowdfunding platform and donors, as well as our relatives, friends, colleagues and the landlord of our residence for their care and encouragement.”