A San Diego hospital Wednesday announced the birth of a girl, believed to be the world’s tiniest surviving baby, weighing just 8.6 ounces and measuring smaller than an apple. The baby, named Saybie, was born at 23 weeks and three days and was sent home as a healthy infant.

The baby received nearly five months care in the neonatal intensive care unit before weighing 5 pounds, Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns said in a statement, adding that while the baby’s family gave permission to share the story, they did not want to be identified.

According to the Tiniest Baby registry maintained by the University of Iowa, the baby is the world’s smallest baby ever to survive.

Saybie's mother gave birth via emergency cesarean section at 23 weeks' gestation. A full-term birth occurs between week 37 and week 42, according to the hospital.

"She was small and fragile, and could fit in the palm of the hands of her care team," the hospital said, adding that the premature birth was necessary because Saybie was not gaining weight and her mother's life was at risk.

After Saybie's delivery, her parents were advised she might not survive the first 24 hours.

"They told my husband he had about an hour with her and that she was going to die," Saybie's mother said in a video released by the hospital. "But that hour turned into two hours. Which turned into a day. Which turned into a week."

Those who cared for Saybie at the hospital called her a "miracle."

"I'm just really proud of them and the baby, and to just see them transform as parents and see this little baby go home that usually is like completely against all odds," one of her nurses, Devyn Kohl, said.

Saybie's mother thanked the hospital staff who cared for her daughter.

"I just want her to know how strong she is," nurse Emma Wiest said about Saybie. "I mean if she can start off where she was and do as well as she can be, there's nothing she can't do."

Representational image of a premature baby's foot at the Argenteuil hospital in the suburbs of Paris, July 22, 2013. FRED DUFOUR/AFP/Getty Images