A mother astonished medical professionals when she gave birth to a ‘mermaid baby’, but tragically lost it only four hours later.
The sex of the baby, who was unnamed, was not certain because of the lack of development around the pelvic area, as well as the fused legs.
The condition is known as ‘mermaid syndrome’, which is extremely rare and only affects one in every 60,000 to 100,000 births.
Murskura Bibi, 23, gave birth naturally on Wednesday in Kolkata in eastern India, but had been unable to afford any scans during her pregnancy.
As a result, she only learnt about her child’s condition after she gave birth.
Dr Sudip Saha, child specialist at the hospital said:
The parents are a labour couple and had not sought proper medication during pregnancy due to lack of money.
Lack of proper nutrition and improper blood cirulation to the baby from mother can create this kind of abnormality.
The doctor said he had never seen such a baby before, being only the second in the country.
This is only the first case in the state and the second in the country.
Dr Saha said:
The baby had normal formation in upper part of the body but below the waist its legs were fused together. The lower part was not developed completely.
We learnt the mother had not undergone ultrasound sonography throughout gestation.
Sirenomelia, the proper name for mermaid syndrome, is incredibly rare, and there are currently no known survivors of the condition to date.
There are apparently numerous complications which come from the condition, including bladder and gastrointestinal complications.
Medical historian Lindsey Fitzharris, told MailOnline the condition occurs when the umbilical cord fails to form two arteries.
Sirenomelia is extremely fatal. There are no accounts of anyone with this condition surviving in the past.
Most died within days of being born due to kidney failure and bladder failure.
It’s not clear where the condition stems from.