The seriously ill premature baby who improved in the incubator after the hug of his twin brother


Image caption

Deiniol (right) is already at home, but still needs oxygen.

Was he saved by the proximity of his little brother?

A premature baby who
the doctors thought I was going to die
He showed a dramatic improvement after his twin brother was put in his incubator.

Hannah Zimunya believes that her son Dylan saved the life of her brother, Deiniol, by hugging him when the twins met at the hospital where the second was admitted.

The 28-year-old mother started labor prematurely in October 2018.

The doctors at Wrexham Maelor Hospital in Wales tried to delay the delivery.
s gemel
they were born
two days later
, at 25 weeks gestation.

Dylan weighed 0.9 kg while Deiniol was even smaller, with only 0.7 kg.

Both were transferred 96 km away, to the neonatal unit of Bolton Hospital, outside Manchester, and were placed with artificial respirators.

Image caption

The mother, Hannah, believes that Dylan (left) saved Deiniol with her hugs.

Dylan improved and was taken back to Wrexham Maelor Hospital, but Deiniol deteriorated and stayed in Bolton, with a 100% supply of oxygen to survive, showing no signs of restoration.

"Being twins, we expected children to be born prematurely, but I think nobody expects or prepares to go through this," says Hannah, who has three other children with her husband Xavi.

"The whole experience was scary."


When the twins were 14 weeks old, the medical staff was worried about the deterioration of Deiniol's condition and they took Dylan to the hospital to say goodbye.

The twins spent a few minutes together in the incubator, hugging each other.

Hours later,
Deiniol's condition is

and they could reduce the oxygen supply to 50%.

"When I called that night to ask how Deiniol was, they told me that their oxygen had been reduced by half," Hannah says.

Image caption

The twins celebrated their first year of birth in October.

"It was amazing. Somehow, Dylan, just being there, helped Deiniol," he says.

"I didn't expect that at all and neither did nurses and doctors."

"He saved his life with a hug"

The next day, Dylan was already gone and Deiniol showed signs of deterioration again and needed 100% oxygen, so the nurses suggested taking the little brother back for another hug, recalls Hannah.

"In two days, they took the respirator completely from Deiniol. It really was a miracle," he says.

"He saved his life with a hug. It was
of seeing and
they showed us
they had to separate

Cath Bainbridge, midwife of the Royal Bolton Hospital Neonatal Unit, said that "in the case of these two beautiful children, it was undoubtedly right."

Image caption

Deiniol (left) and Dylan, with their parents, Hannah and Xavi.

Dylan remained in Bolton with Deiniol for another two months and was discharged in January 2019. Deiniol went home in April.

When he arrived home he still needed small amounts of oxygen 24 hours a day while his lungs became strong enough to breathe independently.

Last October, l
The children celebrated their first birthday with a big party
, with his brothers TJ, 8, Lily, 6, and Thandi, 3.

"I can't explain how happy I am that the two children have celebrated their first birthday, because there was a time when we didn't know if they would both have the chance," says Hannah.

"We couldn't be more grateful to The Wrexham Maelor and Bolton hospitals," he says.

Placing twins together in incubators in an attempt to improve their condition is a practice that is carried out in hospitals in the United Kingdom, but the evidence on whether it really has benefits is inconclusive.

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