Rare identical triplets born to UK couples. Bouncing baby girls Ffion, Maddison and Paige are now home for the first time after spending six weeks in intensive care. And the girls are only here thanks to proud parents Karen and Ian Gilbert who claim they rejected doctors’ calls to ᴛᴇʀᴍɪɴᴀᴛᴇ the ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴄʏ twice. Medical professionals ꜰᴇᴀʀᴇᴅ the rare birth – ᴄᴀᴜsᴇᴅ by a single egg sᴘʟɪᴛᴛɪɴɢ into three – could see the babies take each other’s fluid and space potentially k.illing one another. But amazingly Ffion, Maddison and Paige – born weighing just 3.8lbs, 3.5lbs and 3.4lbs – have defied the odds and are now doing well aged eight weeks.
Karen Gilbert felt pain during her last scan and went into early ʟᴀʙᴏʀ. But the triplets, while still tiny, are doing well. Mrs Gilbert, 32, said: “The ᴘʀᴇɢɴᴀɴᴄʏ has taken its toll but now I’m taking my time to recover and get to know my three beautiful girls. The doctors thought it could be up to three months before we could bring them home so we feel privileged to have them here with us.”
Identical triplets occur when one egg splits in three, a one in 200million chance withoutⒾⓋⒻ say experts. The couple from Pontypool, Wales, also have an older daughter Faye, aged three. They became pregnant with the triplets while honeymooning in New York. Delighted Gilbert said: “I still feel like someone’s going to tell me I’ve had my time with them now and take them away.”
“At first we thought it was one, but at eight weeks I got bad ᴘᴀɪɴs. We thought it was a ᴍɪsᴄᴀʀʀɪᴀɢᴇ but it was three babies ꜰɪɢʜᴛɪɴɢ for space. I’m taking my time to recover and get to know my beautiful girls. Their personalities are shining through and I can’t wait to get to know them.”
“At first they didn’t look real and you could pick them up with one hand. It was a bit of a sʜᴏᴄᴋ,” said dad Ian Gilbert of his girls, who weighed less than 11 pounds combined at birth. “Now we’ve got them home we are coming to terms with it. They are starting to feel like our own.”
Julian Hayman, press office for Nevill Hall Hospital, said: “The midwives were all thrilled to have a triplet birth at the Royal Gwent Hospital. “Everyone involved has taken great care of the girls to ensure their speedy return home. “We all wish proud parents Ian Karen all the very best for the future.”