Archive for Friday, October 13, 2006

Kansas parents marvel over quintuplets

October 13, 2006

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— David and Kate Brooks marvel when they enter the neonatal unit and gaze upon their newborns - all five of them.

"It's like, wow, those are my kids, and I have six kids now and yesterday I had one," the beaming 39-year-old father said during a news conference Thursday.

Said his wife: "They truly belong to us and that's still kind of a tough grasp, but it's a reality."

The Fairway, Kan., couple added three girls and two boys to their family Tuesday in a Cesarean-section delivery at St. Luke's Hospital in Kansas City.

Kate Brooks had undergone fertility treatments to conceive the couple's eldest daughter, Mallory, 18 months.

As Mallory's first birthday neared, the couple decided to try again. They learned in May that their two-bedroom, two-bath ranch-style home was about to be very full.

"We were in shock when we heard the news," the couple wrote on their Web site. "Looking back, our doctor was also in some shock! He informed us that we needed to 'talk' about all of our options."

Those options included selectively aborting some of the fetuses.

"Terminating the pregnancy was never an option for us. I didn't feel that I had the right to choose which of our babies to keep and which to terminate."

Kate Brooks, 35, spent four weeks in the hospital before going into labor at 28 weeks' gestation. A full-term pregnancy is about 40 weeks.

A team of more than a dozen physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners and respiratory therapists was on hand for the delivery. Emily Jayne arrived first, followed by Owen David, Jesse (pronounced Jess) William, Ruth Elizabeth and Helen Marie.

The babies' weights range from 2 pounds, 2 ounces to 2 pounds, 8 ounces. Four were 14 inches long, and one was 14 3/4 inches long.

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