The maternity and neonatal intensive care unit at Saint Luke’s East Hospital in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, is twice as busy as usual this week caring for six sets of twins.
The twin babies range from 2 to 30 days old and all are doing well, said Brenda Cornell, a clinical nurse manager for the hospital. She said the staff is enjoying the unusual situation.
“This is the first time we’ve ever had this many sets of twins in our hospital at the same time,” Cornell said.
The timing of the twins' arrival is a coincidence and the result of some early and unexpected deliveries.
Twin births everywhere are on the rise. Prior to 1980, one in 50 babies born was a twin, amounting to about two percent of births, according to National Center for Health Statistics. Twins now account for one in 30 babies, or 3.5 percent of births.
When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked into where all those extra sets of doubles are coming from, they found that women are waiting longer to get pregnant, and older women are more likely to give birth to multiples. The rest of the spike can be attributed to the increased use of infertility treatments, the CDC report found.
Cornell noted that none of the hospital’s simultaneous twins were the result of infertility treatments. And, she said, there are probably more to come.
“Moms carrying twins from all over the community heard about this and now want to come here to deliver,” she said.
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