Identical triplets, born against odds, are doing well eight weeks after they were born. Ffion, Madison, and Page Gilbert were conceived naturally from one egg.
Their parents, Karen and Ian, were offered a termination during the pregnancy due to a high risk to both mom and babies. However, they rejected the option.
The Gilberts discovered their triplet surprise at their eight-week ultrasound, when they learned there were three hearts beating instead of one. Karen recalled, "We were just very shocked. The lady doing the scan had to call somebody else into the room to check what she was seeing was right."
The ultrasound technician was right. The couple already has a three-year-old daughter, Faye, and didn't expect to have more than one (at least at a time) more child. Doctors offered the couple the chance to either terminate the pregnancy or to try and reduce the number of babies.
However, the couple explained, "We just couldn't do it. The babies are ours." The girls were born safe on August 2 at 30 weeks. Ian Gilbert added that the pregnancy took a toll on his wife. He explained, "Because they are identical, they all share the same placenta and the same fluid. They all grew and fought so quickly it was practically ripping Karen's muscles apart."
Being pregnant with multiples carries several health risks, including the possibility of twin-to-twin transfusion symptom. The condition causes blood from one fetus to transfer to another. Thankfully, the identical triplets didn't have any issues. Karen was scanned every week to make sure her babies were growing well. She felt pain during her 30 week scan and went into labor early.
The triplets weighed less than six pounds each at birth and spent six weeks in the hospital. Ian recalled of the girls, "At first they didn't look real and you could pick them up with one hand. It was a bit of a shock." But the shock soon turned into joy and happiness, and at eight weeks old, the identical triplets are showing their own personalities.
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