By Becca Husselbee
A girl who was Britain’s smallest baby is now living life to the full as a teenager.
Little Aaliyah Hart weighed just 12oz and was given a 1% chance of survival when she was born three months premature in 2003
She was so tiny at seven inches long she could sit in the palm of her mother’s hand and her palm was no bigger than a five pence coin.
Doctors told her mother Lorraine that she would have little chance survive as her lungs were not developed properly.
Now a teenager, she has astounded medics that she pulled through and shown no signs of problem.
Aaliyah said: “I was never aware of the fuss when I was born and it has never affected me.
“It was a shock when I saw the clothes I used to wear as a baby, they look like they would be small enough to fit a doll.
“I enjoy drama at school and would like to be an actress one day.”
Lorraine, 51, said: “I had a lot of problems throughout the pregnancy, the amniotic fluid was slowly decreasing and doctors advised me to have an abortion.
“I was determined to continue the pregnancy because I had struggled to conceive and was close to having IVF.
“I went into labour at home and was rushed to the hospital.
“As soon as she came out she was whisked away and put onto a life support machine.”
Lorraine remembers the devastating moment doctors told her that little Aaliyah only had a one per cent chance of survival and may not make it through the night.
The social worker, said: “I didn’t even think that she could be the smallest baby in the UK because there were so many small babies on the unit.
“It was actually the nurses who thought she may have been.”
Her daughter was so small that volunteers knitted and made clothes that were small enough to fit the tiny tot.
Aaliyah has thrived since receiving hormone treatment as a baby to help her grow and has hit all the important milestones, such as taking her first steps and starting school.
Lorraine, from Hall Green, Birmingham, said: “She is still very petite for her age but she is a happy and healthy teen.
“She has seen pictures of herself as a baby and when she was younger she was shocked at how tiny she was.
“As she has got older she has gotten used to all the media attention and it doesn’t interest her as much.
“She loves her drama classes and hopes to get into acting.”
Mum, Lorraine, worried that her daughter would be knocked over due to her small size when she started school but the plucky youngster is gearing up to start her GCSE studies at Queensbridge school, in Birmingham.
Lorraine said: “She has grown up to be a nice child.
“She’s quiet and is well-liked.
“She’s very popular at school with her teachers and her peers and she’s a well-grounded teenager.
“We never thought she would get to this point, she is a miracle baby.”