History was created in Trinidad and Tobago and the entire Caribbean when a 28-year-old mother gave birth to sextuplets – three boys and three girls – at the Maternity Hospital of the Eric Williams Medical Complex, Mt. Hope, about six miles from the capital, Port of Spain.
The babies were conceived after the mother used a fertility drug.
The first baby was born at 10:10 a.m. on Monday, March 4, said Professor Bharath Bassaw, consultant obstetrician, at a press conference at the hospital.
Bassaw said they may include a set of triplets, or possibly a pair of twins and four single babies, but doctors need to look at the placenta to determine that.
The Cesarean section took an estimated 40 minutes, which Bassaw said was “quite good.”
“We got all six babies within three minutes, which was quite surprising to all of us as well. We had a cadre of neonatal staff,” he said.
The mother, from Central Trinidad, whose name was given as Petra Lee Foon, was given a due date of Thursday, April 14, but because she was having difficulty in breathing, doctors decided to operate 10 days early.
Bassaw said the newborns had to be kept in ventilators and on drips for the next couple of weeks, after which they would be introduced to breast milk.
Their birth weights range from one pound nine ounces to three pounds and the smallest is a girl.
Bassaw was one of the two surgeons who delivered the babies along with a staff of 18 doctors and nurses – a team that was put in place to support the 42 staff members in the unit.