Baby born 'no bigger than a human hand' leaves hospital after 132 days

Sofia was born four months early.
Sofia was born four months early. Photo: Facebook/nhslanarkshire

A baby girl who was born four months early and given a 10 percent chance of survival during labour has finally left hospital, 132 days later.

Sofia Viktoria Birina was born at just 22 weeks and four days. She was due at the start of February but instead arrived on on October 2. 

The tiny baby, who weighed 'about as much as a loaf of bread' when she was born, has spent the last four months in the special baby unit at the University Wishaw Hospital in Scotland. But can now finally go home with her parents mum Egija and dad Inars.

​Egija, who is originally from Latvia but now lives in North Lanarkshire, Scotland, said everything was fine at her 20 week scan, but changed dramatically a week later.

"I felt pain so I went into hospital and was told that I was already dilated and had to go into labour," she explained, saying after 10 days of bed rest Sofia was born.

"She arrived in the world with the biggest scream and was crying so much. We didn't expect she would survive but that's where our journey started."

When Sofia was born, she weighted just 500g and was 26cm long.

"Sofia was literally the size of a hand, so fragile and small and her skin was see-through," described ​Egija, adding she had to wait for a week before she could hold her.

"Once I was able to hold her, they couldn't get her out of my hands."

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Egija, Inars and baby Sofia.

Egija, Inars and baby Sofia. Photo: Facebook/nhslanarkshire

The first three months of Sofia's life were spent in an incubator, with the tiny baby also born with a heart defect, stage one brain bleeds, an eye disease, retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) and numerous infections.

It took six weeks for Sofia to breathe without the ventilator, at first she could only last 20 minutes before her heart rate dropped. She still has a little tube attached to her now at home to give her extra oxygen.

Her parents say she has been doing well since they got home.

"She has the biggest and most beautiful smile on her face and is getting used to her new surroundings," Egija said.

"She's now four months old and I look at her and think she could still be in my tummy because of how small she is, even though she is now four times her birth weight."

Sofia will regular check-ups for the next two years and for the next four years at a lung clinic.

Egija has urged parents of prematurely born babies to stay postive.

"To all other mummies going into such an early labour, there is hope," she said. "Never give up. "