'One in 50 million' quintuplets all safely delivered and thriving

Photo: UK HealthCare
Photo: UK HealthCare 

Many of us can't imagine having five children, let alone being pregnant with five at the same time. That was exactly the situation Briana Driskell was faced with when, after five rounds of fertility treatment, an ultrasound revealed five sacs.

According to Today, Briana and her husband Jordan were told by their physician that the IUI treatment only had a "four to eight per cent chance" of producing three or more babies. But at an eight-week scan, they discovered Briana was in fact carrying quintuplets - and their world turned upside down.

"I was in such shock, I couldn't speak," she said. "I just sat there staring at the screen in disbelief. I couldn't believe there were five sacs."

The high risk pregnancy was tough on Briana, who was diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum when she was hospitalised with debilitating nausea, constant vomiting and dehydration. The 29-year-old lost nearly five kilos and could only tolerate cereal with cold milk and banana.

"It was pretty awful," she said.

Then, just as her condition started to improve, she was told at 22 weeks gestation that her cervix was starting to shorten and was at risk of going into labour. She remained on strict bed rest at the University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital until she was 28 weeks pregnant, falling short of her goal by two weeks after developing pre-eclampsia. The five babies - three girls and two boys - were delivered on May 2.

Zoey, Asher, Gavin, Daokta and Hollyn (who were delivered in that order) met their mum the following day after some post-delivery complications. Briana recounted the experience to the Lexington Herald Leader, saying it was hard for her that others got to meet them before she did.

When she did, of course, it was all worth it.

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"They say you never know love until you've had a child, and wow, especially having five, I mean it's five times over. I just cried and cried," she said. "I couldn't even speak. It was unreal."

The babies remain in intensive care but all are progressing well and have hit their 900 gram goal. Briana reports that the next goal is to get them home by their due date of July 22.

She says that they have been approached a few times to do a reality show but that it's "not really our cup of tea".

Of conceiving five babies from five rounds of IVF, she says, "We ended up getting one baby for every treatment that we tried. We got our money's worth; it just took us a little longer than we expected."