The 46 Year Pregnancy

The 46 Year Pregnancy

2006, Health  -   7 Comments
Ratings: 7.37/10 from 103 users.

In 1955, in a small village outside Casablanca, 26-year-old Zahra was pregnant with her first child. But after 48 hours of painful labor the baby was still not born. She was rushed to the local hospital, but in the ward she saw a woman in terrible pain dying in childbirth. Convinced she would suffer the same fate Zahra fled the hospital and returned home to her village.

In the days that followed Zahra suffered excruciating labor pains but still the baby would not come. After a few days the pain stopped and the baby stopped moving. She believed in a local superstition known as "sleeping baby" and that one day her baby would wake up. Soon villagers began to talk and came up with their own theories about what had happened to Zahra's baby.

To try and forget the sleeping baby inside her, Zahra adopted three children. Her children grew up and had children of their own. Forty six years later her excruciating pains returned. Her adopted son became worried about his mother's deteriorating health. Racked with pain she was barely able to make the grueling four-hour journey to the hospital in Rabat, the capital of Morocco.

Her stomach was swollen and she was crippled with pain. Doctors thought she had an ovarian tumor and took her immediately for an ultrasound scan. The doctors were baffled and to try and find out more they've sent the woman for further scans. Radiologist was shocked by what he saw. Inside the stomach of the 75-year-old woman there was a baby. But even more shocking was that this baby had been conceived 46 years before.

Ectopic means out of place, outside the womb. In a normal pregnancy the fertilized egg travels down the fallopian tube, implants and grows in the uterus. In an ectopic pregnancy the egg implants in the fallopian tube. In extremely rare cases like Zahra's the fetus bursts out of the fallopian tube and then develops in the abdominal cavity. Most fetuses cannot survive past three months here, but Zahra's fetus had somehow survived to full term by attaching its placenta to vital organs inside her stomach and remained there for further forty-six years.

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Dallas Yvonne Auldridge.
3 months ago

As a retired RN after 31 years I found this film miraculous. Very interesting and knowledgeable. Such pain and suffering this two ladies had to endure. Yet I was able to learn so much after so many years. I was only upset that the film did not finish and I was unable to see the completion of the second pregnancy and what happened to the third baby. Yet I am giving this film a 10. What a marvelous learning experience. Thank You.

7 years ago

Amazing facts! I imagined the first time I heard this story from my friend how terrifying to know that the mother survived for many years not knowing that the baby is dead. But because of her beliefs perhaps it remedy nto her that her child is a sleeping baby. A lesson learned from the story that we need to e careful to our superstitious beliefs and also fears. We have to overcome fears,so that fears won't overcome us.

9 years ago

A terrific documentary that everyone should watch, (especially men)and anyone who doesn't feel empathy for the people involved, should have their head examined. The strength of the women involved, and what they had to endure is miraculous to say the least. I must admit, it was absolutely riveting, and makes you realize just how precious life really is. (check it out) Note: Not for the queasy.

9 years ago

Unbelievable what Zahra endured all those years. What a strong woman!
Jane and Marks' story had an unexpected happy ending. They made beautiful children. Hope they don't try for any more though!

9 years ago

I read this story several months back

9 years ago

"Inside the stomach of the 75-year-old woman there was a baby. "

"Stomach" is not interchangeable with "abdomen".

9 years ago

Interesting choice on Mother's day. Coincidence?
Both extraordinary stories.