A two-week old baby girl born with a rare skin condition that has restricted the size of her head to that of a 26-week-old fetus and skin covered in wrinkles has been rejected by her parents.
She was fed with goats' milk from a spoon for two weeks by her grandfather before he could get her to a hospital in Maharashtra, India.
Born in the seventh month of pregnancy, she weighs just 800 grams. Doctors said her unusual features could be the due to Intra-Uterine Growth Retardation (IUGR) and some chromosomal abnormality.
Her mother, Mamata Dode (25), is said to have refused to feed her because of her strange looks and hasn't visited her in hospital. Even her father, Ajay Dode (25) has refused to accept the baby.
Dilip Dode (50), infant's grandfather brought her to hospital in Mumbai, after she became ill.
The baby was diagnosed with microcephaly, a neuro-developmental disorder in which the head circumference of the newly-born child is significantly smaller than normal.
Dr. Sudha Rao, head of the Neo-Natal Intensive Care Unit of the hospital, said "The probable causes of this condition could be a genetic syndrome, chromosomal abnormality or intra-uterine infection. The baby is expected to experience problems with regard to the brain functioning as she grows. 0.1 to 0.2 babies in 1,000 live births are born with microcephaly. The little girl also has a small hole in her heart; medically this is termed as a Patent Foramen Ovale."
Wadia Hospital in Mumbai has agreed to meet the cost of her treatment, expected to be 5, 00,000 lakhs (around £5,000), and has arranged accommodation on the premises' for Mr Dode.
"I am thankful to the hospital for giving free medical treatment to my granddaughter. It is really disheartening that even her parents have rejected her but I will go to any extent to save her," said Mr. Dilip Dode.
Dr Minnie Bodhanwala, CEO at the hospital, said, "She was dehydrated when she came to us and any further delay could have proven fatal. But now she is responding to the medical treatment and improving. We are determined to treat the baby and hopefully after all the test results come we would start the treatment."