Jacob McMahon, the most premature twin to ever survive in the United Kingdom, was born at just 23 weeks into his mother's pregnancy. His twin sister Emie died soon after she was born at 21 weeks due to an infection, and Jacob came just over a week later. Five months after his birth, and one month after his due date, Jacob was finally ready to leave the hospital!
His mother, Sarah Fisher, who is 25 years old, said: It feels surreal being home. It is a day that was not spoken of because we thought it would never happen." She and her husband Scott McMahon (26), like the British press, focused on the fact that doctors advised the couple to abort Jacob after his sister was born so much too early following pre-term labor. The legal limit for abortion in the United Kingdom is set at 24 weeks, and that is also the time at which premature babies are officially considered to be viable, despite the fact that more and more are surviving even before they reach 24 weeks, like Jacob.
Sarah was quoted in the British newspaper the Daily Telegraph as saying: "We couldn't believe it when doctors told us we had to consider abortion. They told us I had an infection and that he wouldn't survive. They gave us 24 hours to decide whether we wanted to take a tablet that could stop his heart. We did not want to do that but luckily that decision was taken away from us when I went into labour at midnight."
What a tragic story! A story that shows that doctors can be wrong as well at times, and even make parents feel pressured into an abortion. Still, there is no denying that the survival of Jacob was nothing short of a miracle, though miracles seem to be happening more often to premature babies these days. The most premature baby to ever have survived was a German baby named Freida, who was born in April at 21 weeks and five days into her mother's pregnancy.