IVF Mother’s Two Sets Of Identical Twins Defy 70m-To-One Odds After Being Born 11 Week Premature

They are less than a month old but the Turner quads are already getting used to beating the odds.

First their parents Julian and Sharon went through four rounds of IVF – and all their savings – to conceive them.

Then they survived being born by emergency caesarean more than 11 weeks prematurely, with each weighing just over 2lb, after their mother developed complications in the pregnancy.

And to cap it all, James, Joshua, Lauren and Emily are two sets of identical twins – a one in 70million occurrence.

Mr and Mrs Turner married in 2007 and when their attempts to conceive naturally were unsuccessful, they decided to try IVF treatment.

The first three rounds failed but finally last year, after spending a total of £40,000, 36-year-old Mrs Turner fell pregnant at the fourth attempt. Until the 12-week scan, the couple, from Upper Lambourn, Berkshire, believed they were having only one baby.

When nurses revealed they were expecting quadruplets, sales director Mr Turner, 43, and his wife were overjoyed – and stunned.

But specialists at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford put a dampener on their happiness by pointing out some stark realities about the difficulty of carrying quads.

Mrs Turner said: ‘They gave us three options: get rid of all of them, get rid of two of them or keep them. There was no way we could get rid of them. We were happy to let nature take its course.’

Then during a routine check-up last month, doctors found that Mrs Turner, who had not been due to give birth until June 13, had pre-eclampsia – a dangerous high blood pressure complication – and a low blood platelet count.

On March 30 doctors performed an emergency caesarean. ‘There were no guarantees but they said they hoped they would all survive and be okay,’ said Mrs Turner, who was 29 weeks into her pregnancy.

James was first, weighing 2lb 4oz followed by his identical twin Joshua, 2lb 4oz, Lauren, 2lb 6oz and Emily, 2lb 4oz.

Mr Turner, who watched the births, said: ‘It was slightly like an out of body experience, being there and watching it was unreal.

Mrs Turner said: ‘What was hard for me was that I couldn’t see the babies until the day after. I heard each one crying as they came out and then they got whisked away and checked over and taken to the special care baby unit.’

On the second night after they were born, both the boys developed difficulties breathing but quickly recovered.

Mr Turner said: ‘After about day five or day six we began to feel a bit more optimistic.’

The couple expect to be able to take their quads home from the special baby unit at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading within weeks.

Mr Turner, one of triplets himself, said: ‘We are ecstatic, words can’t describe the feeling. It’s all good news. They are doing well and getting bigger and stronger which is the main thing. Eventually we will get them home.’

They are confident of coping with the demands of mass late-night feeds and nappy changes.

‘My mum and dad have sold their house and moved in with us to help us out,’ said Mrs Turner.

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