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Parents Channae and Jamie with baby Lacey in the hospital. Photo: Channae Kirkwood

Baby Lacey born at 21 weeks in July now thriving at home

Tiny baby Lacey is thriving at home with her parents this fall after she was born so prematurely that even doll clothes did not fit her.

The Daily Record reports parents Channae Kirkwood, 23, and Jamie Murray, 28, of Kilmarnock, Scotland, feared the worst when Lacey was born at just 28 weeks of pregnancy on July 14.

But their prayers were answered when their baby girl overcame every complication and finally grew well enough to go home.



Kirkwood said her pregnancy with Lacey was a surprise, but they were thrilled when they learned the news.

At 24 weeks, however, Kirkwood said she began to bleed and spent several weeks in and out of the hospital. The complications brought back traumatic memories of her previous pregnancy with her son, Caleb, who was stillborn, according to the report.

“It was like all the exact same things were happening, except with Caleb it started when I was 19 weeks,” she said. “… It was devastating.”

She continued: “With Lacey I was a bit further on, so I think that helped her a lot. I was just hoping and praying the same thing wouldn’t happen again. I was terrified.”

On July 9, her water broke and she was admitted to the hospital; five days later, Lacey was born weighing just 1 pound, 1 ounce at 28 weeks of pregnancy, according to the report.

“She was so, so small. We couldn’t even hold her for the first three days. I was scared to even touch her in case I hurt her. They had to use bubble wrap to help keep her warm,” her mother said.

Kirkwood said she had a difficult time finding clothes that would fit her daughter.

“All the premature baby clothes were too big. She had some dolls and I even tried taking off their clothes for her, but even they were too big,” she said.

Lacey spent 13 weeks in the hospital before she grew well enough to go home on Oct. 8. Her mother said she now weighs 5 pounds, 8 ounces and is doing well.

“She is still absolutely tiny but at least I can buy clothes from the ‘tiny baby’ range that almost fit her now,” Kirkwood said.

Premature babies like Lacey who, not that long ago, would have been considered non-viable are now surviving and thriving.

Earlier this year, the Guinness Book of World Records declared Richard Scott William Hutchinson, of Wisconsin, the most premature baby ever to survive. In 2020, he was born at 21 weeks gestation – 131 days before his due date – weighing 11.9 ounces, WCCO Minneapolis reports.

Viability is a moving line. In the 1970s, babies were considered to be viable at about 28 weeks of pregnancy, but as medicine advanced, the line moved back to 24 weeks and now is about 22 weeks, though some babies are surviving even earlier.

Several years ago, a study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that more premature infants are surviving at 22 weeks of pregnancy. This and other research recently prompted the British Association of Medicine to issue new guidelines encouraging medical treatment for babies born at 22 weeks of pregnancy. Previously, the guidelines did not recommend treatment until 24 weeks.

–LifeNews in partnership with Metro Voice