Kathy Petersen’s Blog

Babies with Anencephaly

Posted in abortion, children by Kathy on October 4, 2008

This is in response to a blog post on RealChoice. I’m including it here because, for some reason, the post isn’t saying it’s going through (usually it says it was saved and may take a moment to appear; this time it doesn’t say anything — not even an error message). I’m assuming it either had too many links or was too long, or both.

Baby Marcella died on Aug. 5, 2008, of cardiac arrest due to complications of pneumonia. She was over 18 months old.

Here is an older entry on her and anencephaly in general, with some interesting links, especially the parent-site of these stories of babies with anencephaly. There are 40 stories, and I read all of them in the first 4 columns: Gracie reacted to the lemon-flavored wet wipe put in her mouth to moisten it; Sarah lived 11 days; Ira’s story was written by Ina May Gaskin, hippie midwife — after he was born and discovered to be anencephalic, they took him to the hospital so that he could have whatever care could be given, and they found out after 5 days they weren’t giving him any food or water, so they brought him back to The Farm where he lived another 5 days; Michael David lived 13 days.

You may possibly be interested in the linked birth-death records from the CDC for 2003-2004. I just ran a query, and it shows 7 anencephalic babies living past 28 days. Unfortunately, all post-neonatal deaths (28-365 days) are lumped together, and it doesn’t show if any lived longer than that; also stillbirths and abortions are not counted, but if all babies who survive a pre-term induction are given a birth certificate, then they will be included.

This is touching, written by the mother of an anencephalic baby.


4 Responses

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  1. dayzofrain said, on October 4, 2008 at 6:08 pm


    I find it interesting that you posted about this subject. You see, my best friend gave birth to a baby girl (vaginally), Chloe, on 29 October who had this very condition.

    She lived for 7.5 hours and died on 30 Oct. She was beautiful and for those hours she was loved and I believed loved in return. They bathed her,changed her diaper when needed. Every one held her.

    Yes, we all knew that she had this condition and we all supported my friend in her decision to continue the pregnancy- we are all very much pro-life.

    Baby Chloe’s funeral was yesterday. While it was sad everyone remembered the joy of the time we did have with her (Me talkin over the phone to her since I couldn’t be there).

    I wish people would realize while there is pain that is goin to come with this diagnosis- there is so much joy that comes with these little people

  2. Nicole said, on February 19, 2009 at 7:59 pm

    My son also passed of anencephaly. He lived a little over 33 hours after birth.

  3. Brian said, on May 2, 2009 at 1:55 am

    my father died of anencephaly

    • Jessica said, on May 3, 2011 at 9:37 pm

      either you are incredibly rude or you are very confused on what Anencephaly is. I hope it’s the latter but for your information please see the definition below:

      Anencephaly is a cephalic disorder that results from a neural tube defect that occurs when the cephalic (head) end of the neural tube fails to close, usually between the 23rd and 26th day of pregnancy, resulting in the absence of a major portion of the brain, skull, and scalp

      My best friend gave birth to an anencephalic baby boy weighing 4lb 7oz on Friday and she got to celebrate his life for nearly 58 difficult hours until he passed. She and her husband didn’t sleep for fear that they’d lose a minute with him. He was beautiful and she does not regret her decision to carry him and she will be the first to tell you that she was lucky to have him. We are all better for knowing this little person. He was loved by more than most are in a long lifetime. Today they are makiing funeral arrangements for this tiny person…I’d certainly hope you are not making a mockery of this condition. These are parents losing a child…not a joke.

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