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Entries in Quadruplets (2)

Monday
Feb182013

Texas Mom Delivers Quadruplets: Two Sets of Identical Twins

Gina Sunseri/ABC News(HOUSTON) -- A Texas couple trying to give their son a little sibling gave him four brothers instead, beating the odds to deliver quadruplets — two sets of identical twin boys conceived at the same time.

Tressa Montalvo, 36, gave birth to quadruplets Ace, Blaine, Cash and Dylan on Valentine ’s Day, according to a statement from The Woman’s Hospital of Texas in Houston. Ace and Blaine shared one placenta, while Cash and Dylan shared another.

“We tried to stick to the A-B-C-D theme when naming them,” Montalvo said in the statement. “We didn’t expect it, we were trying for just one and we were blessed with four.”

Montalvo and her husband, Manuel Montalvo Jr., 43, thought they were having twins until their doctor detected a third fetal heartbeat. They were then referred to a maternal fetal medicine specialist, Dr. Brian Kirshon, who found a fourth heartbeat.

“We couldn’t have been more surprised when Dr. Kirshon told us we were having four babies and that they were two sets of twins,” Manuel Montalvo said in the statement. “We were trying for one little brother or sister for our two-and-a-half year old son, Memphis.”

Roughly two percent of all pregnancies result in one set of identical twins, when a fertilized egg splits into two embryos. The odds of having two sets at the same time? Pretty slim, according to Dr. James Grifo, director of the NYU Fertility Center.

“The chance of this outcome is approximately one in 10,000,” Grifo said of two embryos splitting after IVF. “This could also occur in a natural conception, but the chance of that is much [rarer].”

The Montalvos’ pregnancy was all natural, according to Tressa Montalvo.

“No fertility drugs were used. We planned the pregnancy — I guess we just succeeded a little too much!”

Because identical twins can share an amniotic sac and a placenta, they’re at risk for becoming tangled in each others’ umbilical cords and twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome — a rare placental disease that results in one twin getting less blood than the other.

“Having multiples certainly adds risk to a pregnancy in and of itself,” said Dr. Kimberly Gesci, an obstetrician at UH Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio. “One of the biggest risks is preterm delivery and growth restriction.”

The Montalvo brood was born by C-section at 31 weeks. The newborns weighed between 3 pounds, 15 ounces and 2 pounds, 15 ounces.

While extremely rare, delivering two sets of identical twins isn’t unheard of. In April, 2011, Miranda and Josh Crawford of Charlotte, N.C. gave birth to identical twin girls and identical twin boys after undergoing in-vitro fertilization. And in 2002, Christina Tetrick of Wichita, Kan. was pregnant with two sets of identical twin boys, just like the Montalvos.

But while the Montalvo house just got a lot more crowded, the mom and dad of five say they’re not done yet.

“We want a girl,” Manuel Montalvo said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Apr122011

In Vitro Fertilization Gives Couple Two Sets of Identical Twins

Keith Brofsky/Photodisc/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) -- "Babies, babies, babies."  That's how Miranda and Josh Crawford now describe a typical day after their two sets of identical twins -- quadruplets in all -- joined their two-year-old sister in February.

After trying to get pregnant for more than a year, Miranda, 34, and Josh, 28, of Charlotte, North Carolina, turned to artificial insemination, and then in vitro fertilization, to have their first daughter.  Doctors implanted two embryos into Miranda's uterus, and one survived.  On March 17, 2009, Miranda gave birth to baby Joslyn.

But Miranda, 34, and Josh, 28, both registered nurses, hoped to eventually expand their family over time to three or four children.

A year later, the couple sought out in vitro fertilization for a second time.  Again, doctors transferred two embryos into Miranda's uterus, and, just six weeks into the pregnancy, doctors told the couple that they would be having twins.

But the ultrasound was fuzzy, and both the doctor and Miranda wanted to confirm how many babies were growing in her belly.  She returned to the hospital four days later.  This time, the ultrasound was clear -- there were four hearts beating on the screen, not two.

"I was shocked, the doctor was shocked," Miranda said.  "Never had that happened in his entire career."

Typically one or two embryos are inserted into a woman's uterus during one round of IVF.  Even then, the patient typically has a 60 percent chance of getting pregnant at all.  But both embryos had split in Miranda's uterus to create two sets of identical twins.

"For a woman who is less than 35 years old, it is recommended that one or two embryos be transferred into the uterus during a fresh IVF cycle," said Dr. Jani Jensen, a physician in the department of reproductive endocrinology and infertility at Mayo Clinic.  "In this case, it appears that the guidelines were correctly followed, but that lightning struck twice."

"This is certainly an unusual outcome," Jensen said.  "I've never seen it happen quite like this."

Jensen said she has rarely seen embryos split, but doctors estimate that it can happen in a little more than one percent of IVF cycles, and slightly more if the embryos are transferred as blastocysts, or embryos that have developed longer outside the body.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio