During pregnancy, babies are enclosed in the amniotic sac which is a fluid-filed bag, in which the baby develops. It is a thin, but strong, transparent pair of membranes.
This sac bursts on its own, and that’s the moment when you know your “water just broke.” This is what triggers contractions, and that is the moment to begin the labor process. But that isn’t always the case. Although it is very rare, some babies are born inside the amniotic sac, but outside of the mother’s womb.
Recently a nurse taped the birth of a child within an amniotic sac in absolutely perfect conditions. This happened minutes apart from delivering its twin the regular way. This outstanding event took place in a Hospital in Spain. This is the footage recorded that day. It is truly a miracle worth the watch – of course, only if you have the stomach.
How often does this happen?
Like mentioned before, it is very unusual for a baby to be born inside its amniotic sac (also called caul). But it does happen. It is estimated to be 1 out of 80,000 births (or even fewer). And these births usually occur by cesarean section.
Is it dangerous?
It is not dangerous for the baby to be born with its caul. “It’s completely safe,” said Dr. Benson, who has seen 3 cases of this phenomenon in the 12 years he has been delivering babies.
“Babies are always swallowing and drinking amniotic fluid [in the womb], so they’re accustomed to it. And once the baby is born it’s a matter of moments until the bag is broken and the umbilical cord is clamped.”
In fact, there was one baby that survived during 25 minutes inside it after being born, according to an article in JAMA Pediatrics. This type of event is more commonly seen in premature children. Because there is more fluid present in the sac. Contrary to full-term babies that are usually packed in the sac, stretching the thin membranes, making it easier to break.
Why doesn’t the doctor artificially breaks the sac?
Often what happens is that the delivery procedure is so quick (for a variety of reasons) that the doctor doesn’t even notice that the sac is still there. Or maybe the doctor did notice but knows that it’s perfectly okay to remove it after the baby is born. In fact, some research suggests that it is better for a few premature babies to be born in the caul, in order to avoid bruises and bumps on their way out.