Kandace Smith has defied the odds by becoming a mum even though she suffers with cystic fibrosis. The 20-year-old and her fiancé, Steven Bowers, 21, are now proud parents to identical triplet girls, Brooklyn, Savannah and Dakota, who each weighed a tiny 2lb.
Doctors told Kandace, from South Louisiana, USA, to terminate her triplet pregnancy as they didn’t think she would survive it. However, Kandace bravely continued with the world first pregnancy.
“I couldn’t believe that I was actually pregnant…A week later a scan showed I was pregnant with twins, and then another showed later that it was triplets. When the scan showed there were three heartbeats, I nearly passed out,” said Kandace.
Kandace and her girls are set to appear in scientific journals.
“We have never come across a case where a woman with cystic fibrosis has given birth to triplets. Pregnancy is a strain on the body anyway, but for a person with cystic fibrosis it can be life threatening because of extra pressure on the lungs. And with triplets, that risk is trebled,” said a spokeswoman for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.
Kandace was monitored closely throughout her pregnancy and had daily medication to help her stay alive, along with other meds to stop her delivering her babies too early.
“We were very concerned that her lung function wouldn’t be able to tolerate a triplet pregnancy, and if we had to deliver the babies early, they may not have been at a gestational age where they would live,” said obstetrician Gabriella Pridjian, from Tulane-Lakeside Hospital.
The triplets were delivered by emergency caesarean at 28 weeks, after Kandace’s breathing slowly worsened.
In January this year, after three months in hopsital, the triplet girls were allowed home.
“They did so well, we’re really proud of them. They may have been tiny but they were little fighters too. None of them needed to go on a ventilator after they were born and initial tests have shown they are healthy,” Kandace said.
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