How is it possible that triplets can be born seven years apart? Helen Baker gave birth to her first son, Hugo, in 2011. She then gave birth to twins Coco and Monty in August 2018, using the same fertilised eggs that brought Hugo into the world a decade ago.
Helen and her partner Oliver went through 10 rounds of IVF at a cost of £17,500. They even sold their home to pay for the fertility treatment.
Oldest son Hugo was conceived after the couple’s ninth IVF cycle, with twins Coco and Monty arriving over seven years later as a result of the couple’s final round of IVF.
When she was pregnant with the twins, Helen said that her doctor only detected one heartbeat during her six-week scan. However, at her eight-week check-up, doctors noticed a second, smaller heartbeat in Helen’s womb, which was too small to determine conclusively whether it was a second baby.
Helen said: “I wasn’t sure what was going on, and if something strange was happening to my baby. But by 12 weeks, the delightful news came that it was actually a second embryo.”
“I was having twins, and it was like a dream come true,” she added.
Despite their seven-year age gap, the three siblings are officially considered non-identical triplets. This is because they were conceived at the same time, using the same batch of eggs and sperm.
What is the difference between identical and non-identical (fraternal) twins or triplets?
Identical twins and triplets develop from a single fertilised egg, while non-identical twins and triplets develop when more than one egg is fertilised at the same time.
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