“Miracle” Baby Born With 4 Arms & 4 Legs in India
A baby with four arms and four legs has been born in northern India, sparking awe and disbelief in onlookers.
Born in the Shahabad Community Health Center in Uttar Pradesh, India, on July 2, the baby weighed in at 6.5 lbs, and appears to have an extra pair of both arms and legs growing out of its torso.
The newborn has been celebrated as a “miracle of nature” as news of the unique birth spread across the local area.
Some have even suggested that the infant may be a reincarnation of the Hindu goddess Lakshmi, who is depicted as having multiple limbs, and is the goddess of wealth, fortune, power, beauty, fertility and prosperity.
The baby is thought to have a condition called polymelia, which is an incredibly rare birth defect causing the baby to be born with too many limbs.
There are various forms of polymelia, classified depending on where the extra limbs are growing from: Cephalomelia, Pyromelia, Thoracomelia and Notomelia are the four observed types, with the limbs growing from the head, pelvis, thorax or backbone, respectively.
While very uncommon in humans, polymelia is seen at slightly higher rates in animals, having been observed in cows, buffalo, chickens, frogs and fruit flies.
External factors may also play into congenital defects like polymelia. For example, the drug thalidomide that was distributed as a morning sickness treatment in the 1950s caused polymelia, it is estimated, over 10,000 babies to be born malformed with too few or undeveloped limbs, with around half dying within months of being born.
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