By Dave Andrusko
It’s no secret to moms who’ve carried twins, let alone triplets, that there can be significant complications along the way.
And when Katie Johnson went in for her 12 week scan, the doctors gave her frightening news, as she told Lucy Laing of the Daily Mail. The triplets were not growing as rapidly as they should because the placenta was not being shared equally among Oliver, Aurelia, and Oscar.
“There was a risk to all of them,” Mrs. Johnson told Laing. “Oliver was 25 per cent smaller than his brother and the blood flow wasn’t getting to him properly. If Oliver died, Oscar could have died too.”
The doctors suggested aborting one, if not two, of the babies, rather than risk all three.
“But there was no way that we could terminate one or two babies,” Mrs. Johnson said. “We had to give them all a chance of survival.”
To their credit, once Katie and Patrick Johnson turned down the plan of action, doctors at King’s College Hospital carefully monitored the triplets throughout the pregnancy.
“It was nerve-racking as they were scanned each week, and it wasn’t getting any better with Oliver,” Mrs. Johnson told the Daily Mail. “At 28 weeks we were told he had stopped growing completely. But doctors said that as long as the blood flow carried on getting to him, then they would leave him in the womb.”
However, three weeks later, a medical emergency forced a C-section. The blood flow to Oliver had stopped and without a quick delivery he would surely die.
“It was a relief when they were all born safely,” Mrs. Johnson told Laing. “Oliver was incredibly tiny.”
According to Laing, “Oliver weighed only 2lb 15oz, while his identical twin Oscar was 4lb. Non-identical Aurelia was 3lb 15oz.”
But there is a happy ending. The triplets , whom she describes as “My three Christmas miracles,” gained strength and were allowed to go home after just four weeks.
“They have done incredibly well; we are so proud of them,” Mrs. Johnson said of the triplets who are now 11 weeks old. “Oliver has put on some weight, so he’s catching up with his brother now. The doctors expect the difference to even out at some point.”
And she had nothing but praised for the staff.
“The staff at King’s College Hospital were fantastic, she said. “We couldn’t have got through it without them.
“We feel incredibly lucky that the triplets have all survived, and are here with us to celebrate their first Christmas. It’s an incredible gift.”