Baby Noora with her father and one of the specialists treating her at Zulekha Hospital, Sharjah. Image Credit: Supplied

Sharjah: Doctors in the UAE have saved yet another ‘miracle baby’ born extremely premature at 22 weeks.

The baby girl born to Kuwaiti parents, who were in the UAE on a short break, is now showing positive signs of growth and becoming healthier every day, a private hospital said on Wednesday.

Baby Noora was classed as an extremely preterm baby when she was born at Zulekha Hospital Sharjah, weighing only 600 grams. Almost three months after her premature birth on January 30, she has almost tripled her weight. She now weighs just over 1.5 kilograms and is making steady progress, the hospital said in a press release.

Baby Noora’s is the third successful case of doctors in the UAE saving the lives of extreme preemies reported in the past two years. In the previous cases, doctors from two different hospitals rescued the lives of a boy weighing 530gm and a girl weighing 450gm, considered to be the most premature babies to survive in the UAE.

Baby Noora’s birth was triggered by a urinary tract infection in her mother, which saw her admitted to the hospital during their short vacation from Kuwait.

Dr Nada Al Shaikh, specialist gynaecologist, and Dr Mohammad Nabeel Khalaf, consultant neonatologist, were responsible for the safe delivery of the holiday-makers’ child.

Dr Khalaf said: “The first few days of a preterm baby’s life are crucial for its survival. Basic care such as warmth as well as treatment for infections and breathing were provided in order to maximise the baby’s chances.

“The infant was placed on a special breathing machine which enables a very gentle and fast airflow in order to protect her lungs.

“On top of this, we had to make sure the baby was handled in an extremely gentle manner regarding all aspects of her treatment. This was due to her fragility and the very high risk of developing intracranial bleeding or pneumothorax (collapsed lung).”

Providing her round-the-clock care in the hospital’s Neo-Natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), the specialists’ team is now making preparations for baby Noora to return home.

Dr Khalaf added: “The baby has been doing well and has had no major complications. Although it is still too early to predict for certain, chances are she can live a normal life.”

With a high mortality rate associated with extremely preterm births, the World Health Organisation estimates that 75 per cent of deaths related premature births could be eradicated through cost-effective interventions.