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Most premature baby to survive was born nearly 19 weeks early

Nov. 11 (UPI) -- An Alabama boy born nearly 19 weeks before his due date has been dubbed the world's most premature baby to survive by Guinness World Records.

Michelle "Chelly" Butler said her son, Curtis Zy-Keith Means, had been due to be born Nov. 11, 2020, but was delivered at the gestational age of 21 weeks, 1 day on July 5, at the University of Alabama at Birmingham's Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

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Curtis' twin sister, C'Asya Means, survived for only one day after the delivery.

Butler said doctors told her Curtis' changes of survival were extremely low.

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"The medical staff told me that they don't normally keep babies at that age," she told Guinness World Records. "It was very stressful."

Dr. Brian Sims, the neonatologist who oversaw the twins' delivery, said doctors were in "uncharted territory."

"The numbers say that babies at this age will not survive. Mom's question to me was: 'Can we give my babies a chance?'" he said.

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Sims said the infant responded positively to oxygen and his heart rate and other vitals showed early signs of improvement.

"I've never seen a baby this young be as strong as he was," Sims said.

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Curtis was cleared to go home on April 11 of this year, 275 days after his birth.

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Curtis was delivered exactly one month after the previous record-holder, Wisconsin boy Richard Hutchinson, who was born at the gestational age of 21 weeks and 2 days on June 5, 2020.

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