Miracle babies: Sextuplets born after 17 year battle
AFTER 17 years of trying to have kids, Adeboye and Ajibola Taiwo have had six at once.
A Virginia hospital said its staff has successfully delivered the couple's sextuplets and the three boys and three girls are thriving.
VCU Medical Center in Richmond announced the births in a statement, saying they were the first sextuplets delivered at the hospital.
The babies were born May 11 to parents who had tried to conceive for 17 years.
The statement says a 40-person team was involved and the delivery required hours of planning.
Ajibola Taiwo, a native of Nigeria, gave birth via cesarean section.
The babies ranged from 1 pound, 10 ounces (737g), to 2 pounds, 15 ounces (1.3kg).
The couple learned in January they were expecting six children.
"I was excited," said father Adeboye Taiwo.
"For the very first time we were expecting."
The delivery team included: "experts from maternal-fetal medicine, labour and delivery, nursing, anaesthesia, respiratory, neonatal medicine, social work, nutrition, cardiology and chaplain services," the VCU Medical Centre said.
"A typical labour and delivery shift includes one, perhaps two premature births, usually with time in between. We had to co-ordinate with our colleagues in the NICU for six premature babies to be delivered simultaneously," said Dr Susan Lanni from VCU Medical Center.
Mrs Taiwo was 30 weeks and two days pregnant when she gave birth.
"It's not every day that parents bring home sextuplets. Mrs. Taiwo was eating, sleeping and breathing for seven," said Dr Ronald Ramus from VCU Medical Center.
The couple were told 'kangaroo care' would help the babies adjust to life outside the womb.
'Kangaroo care' also known as 'skin-to skin' is when the baby is held agains the bare chest of a parent.
It has been shown to maintain a regular temperature for the newborn, help with the start of breastfeeding and ease the transition to life outside the womb.
The mother was discharged from the hospital on May 18 and the new brood are doing well.
"Given their prematurity, they are doing exceptionally well, Dr Russell Moores from VCU.
And the mother is coping.
"I hope for the smallest of my six children to grow up and say 'I was so small, and look at me now,'" said Mrs Taiwo
Sextuplets are quite rare.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, of the nearly 4 million live births in the U.S. in 2015, only 24 were quintuplets or other higher-order births.