A newborn baby has survived delivery despite its heart being outside the chest cavity.
The infant’s heart was born with its most vital organ exposed and is being treated in the intensive care unit of Shenzhen Children’s Hospital in China’s Guangdong Province.
The parents knew about the condition before the baby was born, but chose not to abort it.
The unusual and dangerous development was caused by a rare disease – less than five babies in one million are struck by it. The illness affects the child’s chest and abdomen.
Less than 200 cases have been recorded and it is the first modern case in China.
Most babies die from the disease before birth.
Doctors are expected to operate to repair the malformation when the infant is strong enough.