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`One in a million' birth of spontaneous triplets in Dublin

Master of the Rotunda Hospital Fergal Malone put the chance of giving birth to three identical children at one in one million

IDENTICAL triplets born in Dublin on New Year's Day were a "one in a million" chance, according to medical experts.

Annmarie Byrne-Ryan and David Ryan were the proud parents of the three boys, named Kyle, Max and Zach, born at the Rotunda Hospital just after midday on Wednesday.

The babies were scheduled for delivery on January 8, but Mrs Byrne-Ryan's waters broke unexpectedly and they made their debut on the first day of 2020.

Master of the Rotunda Hospital Fergal Malone put the chance of giving birth to three identical children at one in one million.

Their mother had "yet to see all three together" hours after the birth as they were all being cared for in the NICU ward.

She told RTÉ's Morning Ireland: "I'm just relieved they're here, they're healthy and all is good at the moment anyway, thank God."

Mrs Byrne-Ryan, who had an ovary removed when she was 18, said the pregnancy had been "very much a shock".

"It wasn't planned. We got married at the end of April and went on honeymoon to Dubrovnik in May, and where most people come back with fridge magnets, myself and David brought home triplets.

"So we were in shock about that and we didn't even know we were having them obviously until I had a bit of a bleed nine or ten weeks in and we came into the hospital and we found out then.

"Then it was even more of a shock to find out they were identical."

She said medics were "baffled" at how she had conceived the three babies naturally.

"We're blessed, absolutely blessed. It's going to be tough, but we've plenty of support from both families so we'll just have to do it."

Mr Ryan has a son, Jordan, and Mrs Byrne-Ryan has a daughter, Shauna, both of whom are 18 and they have a two-year-old called Mason who has just turned two.

The new babies are described as spontaneous triplets, with just 10 per cent of triplet pregnancies occurring spontaneously without any medication or intervention.

"Probably no more common than one in a million or even less. The embryo splits once into two identical twins, and then one of those splits yet again into now an identical triplet. So not only one split but two splitting to achieve identical triplets is incredibly rare," Professor Malone said.

He said they expect the triplets to spend no more than two or three weeks in nursery before the parents can take them home.

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