Friday, January 30, 2009

California Octuplets apparently doing great

It’s been ten years since a successful birth of octuplets happened in the United States, but recently a California woman has done it again. The woman is excited about each and every one of the six boys and two girls that was delivered by cesarean section on Monday. The babies were nine weeks premature.
There have been many questions to whether or not the woman was on fertility drugs or underwent Invetro, but Angela Suleman, the woman’s mother, put those questions to rest. She stated to the Los Angeles Times that her daughter had the embryos implanted last year, and they all took.
Suleman also said that doctors tried to convince her daughter to reduce the pregnancy, but the California woman decided that she couldn’t kill her children.
Ultrasounds done on the children only showed seven embryos, so the family was both shocked and ecstatic about the eighth birth.
The parents of the Octuplets already have six children, so adding eight more will be a challenge, but not a challenge that their mom isn’t happy to take on. The mother of the preemie babies is living with her parents, and her husband is scheduled to leave for Iraq where he is a contract worker.
Dr. Mandhir Gupta, a neonatologist at Kaiser Permanente Bellflower Medical Center, where the octuplets were born, told ‘Good Morning America’ that all eight babies were in stable condition.
Only two of the preemies needed ventilators right away, and have since had their breathing tubes removed. Three still need some sort of oxygen through their noses still, but all are breathing on their own. Seven of the eight babies are eating, and the eighth is said to start today.
The babies are known by letters A-H are expected to be released from the hospital in two months. The most exciting news, other than the eighth baby, was that Baby E who weighed only 1 pound, 8 ounces was the smallest baby, and no longer needs a ventilator. Dr. Gupta described him as, “Very feisty” Tuesday.
All of the babies weighed between 1 pound, 8 ounces and 3 pounds, 4 ounces.

Doctors are warning that even though the babies are doing well, there is still the chance that one or more will develop complications in the future. They urge us to remember that octuplets are rare, and any premature baby's health can change quickly.
There are no octuplets on record that were conceived naturally. The first group of octuplets on record was born live in Mexico City in 1967, but all died within 14 hours according to Encyclopedia Britannica. The first octuplets born alive in the U.S. arrived in Houston in 1998, and one died within a week.
The family sees them all as a blessing, and asks for our prayers that their suddenly larger family will make it through these uncertain times.
The mother of the octuplets is said to be recovering quickly, and has been to see her babies many times. Kaiser Permanente are respecting the mother’s choice for privacy, and not releasing her name, but keep her in your thoughts.

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