The Grapevine

Mother Pleasantly Surprised After Unexpectedly Giving Birth To Quintuplet Daughters

Singh
Due to their premature birth, the Singh girls are currently under close observation. Instagram/CapaMagEng

A woman in eastern India recently experienced the surprise of a lifetime when she gave birth to five babies after expecting to deliver only one.

Manita Singh, 25, of Chhattisgarh is believed to be the first woman to have ever delivered quintuplets naturally in her part of India. After complaining about labor pains, she was rushed to a hospital in Ambikapur where she assumed she would be giving birth to only one child — she had never undergone an ultrasound to know for sure. However, soon after giving birth to her first daughter, she successfully delivered four more, all naturally.

The quintuplet birth makes Singh the mother of the country’s most prematurely born quints, having delivered them at only 26-weeks gestation, the Huffington Post reported — the average pregnancy lasts around 40 weeks. The girls are also extremely underweight, weighing only 3 pounds each, and will remain under close observation in the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit.

Everything about Singh’s daughters is unique. Not only are the young babies defying odds by surviving birth at such a young gestational age, but even their mere existence is a medical marvel. Quintuplets are rare; a couple’s chance of conceiving this many children at once is about one in 60 million. Quintuplets, all with the the same gender, are even rarer.

For example, the first set of all-girl quintuplets to have ever been recorded in the United States was only born last year. (It’s worth noting these children were conceived via artificial reproductive technology (ART), which ups the odds of fertilizing more than one egg.) The couple used intrauterine insemination, a type of ART that involves placing sperm inside the uterus in order to boost the amount of sperm that reach the fallopian tubes. All five girls were born healthy, which is a rarity among quintuplets, too.

The Singhs said the births of their five daughters have made the loss of their son, who died shortly after his birth, just a bit easier. “I am extremely grateful to God for blessing us with not one but five children,” said the girls’ father, Manesh Singh, according to the Daily Mail. “We were heartbroken when we lost our first child, a son, immediately after birth two years ago. I believe God has compensated the loss. I only hope that they all survive and I can give them a wonderful life.”

While multiple births of all types remain rarer than single births, in the United States, these types of pregnancies are on the rise. According to Medline Plus, this is largely due to increasing numbers of women taking fertility drugs. Add to that the fact that there have been vast advances in prenatal and neonatal care, and it’s no wonder more of these children are surviving past childbirth than ever before.

The first set of quintuplets ever recorded to survive infancy were the five identical Dionne sisters, who were born near Corbeil, Ontario, Canada in 1934, Mental Floss reported. Unfortunately, these sisters were taken away from their parents and made wards of the state not long after their birth. The Canadian government then exploited the sisters, turning them into a tourist attraction until their parents were able to win back their custody in 1943.

 

 

 

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