x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 16 January 2018

'My premature son had severe breathing issues'

Miracle baby lived thanks to his mother's CPR.

Doctors are astonished that little Faisal Rahman is alive. He was born two months premature on December 3 last year and weighed 800 grams - less than a bag of sugar.

Nahir Gul, his father, said his wife went into labour early after lifting a heavy gas cylinder in the kitchen.

"Because of the pre-term delivery, the child developed severe breathing problems," Mr Gul said. "The doctors kept the baby in the intensive care unit for three months.

"When the condition of the child completely normalised, doctors discharged the baby."

As a precaution, doctors at Mafraq Hospital in Abu Dhabi taught Mr Gul's wife, Shameen Bibi, how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

"They taught her how to pump the air from her mouth into the mouth of the [baby] by gradually pressing the chest of the child," Mr Gul said. "Sometimes he developed breathing problems and she performed CPR very well and he immediately showed improvement."

Faisal's mother performed CPR four times in just a few days. Each time, he was rushed to hospital.

Mr Gul, a father of four, is grateful for the support his family received from the hospital staff, and the life-saving procedure the doctors taught his wife.

"Thank God, we did not have to pay a hefty amount for the treatment as it was covered under the insurance policy," he said. "Now the baby is at home in Pakistan and he is healthy and has no complications of any sort."

Dr Taisser M Atrak, chair of the paediatric department and chief of neonatology at the hospital, said Faisal's story showed how educating the community plays a critical role in reducing infant mortality and improving overall health.

"By reaching out to them, you're teaching them how to make informative decisions and act appropriately on the spot rather than wait until it may be too late," he said. "The fact this baby is still alive today is evidence."