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'One in a million': Woman gives birth to identical triplets in Dublin's Rotunda Hospital

Annmarie Byrne-Ryan and David Ryan welcomed their three sons into the world yesterday.

Image: Shutterstock/Marko Poplasen

A WOMAN HAS given birth to “one in a million” identical triplets in Dublin’s Rotunda Hospital. 

Annmarie Byrne-Ryan and David Ryan welcomed their three sons into the world just before midday yesterday. 

Byrne-Ryan, who is originally from Swords, told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland that the babies are all “doing well”. 

“I’ve yet to see the three together. David’s been up and down, back and forward to the NICU ward taking loads of pictures, keeping me updated. So I’m anxious myself to get down to see them,” she said. 

Byrne-Ryan was scheduled for delivery on 8 January, however her waters broke unexpectedly at home in the early hours of yesterday morning. 

Speaking of finding out she was pregnant, she said that it was “very much a shock”. 

“Because 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,” Byrne-Ryan said.

“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.”

She added that it was “even more of a shock to find out they were identical”. 

“We found out later down the line that they were identical, I think it was maybe three or four months,” she said. 

Byrne-Ryan added that she has just one ovary, after having the other removed when she was 18. “So they were baffled with this as well,” she said. 

The couple told RTÉ that they have plenty of support around them from family and friends. 

Both Byrne-Ryan and Ryan each have an 18-year-old child. Together, they have a two-year-old son. 

“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,” Byrne-Ryan said. 

Also speaking to RTÉ Morning Ireland, Master of the Rotunda Fergal Malone said the mother of the triplets is “very impressive and she’s doing so well”. 

Malone said that identical triplets are “incredibly unusual”. 

“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,” he said. 

Minister for Health Simon Harris this morning congratulated the couple. 

“Wow. Congrats to Annmarie and David and to all the staff at the Rotunda hospital – one in a million chance – three identical triplets! That’s going to be one busy home!” Harris tweeted. 

“Every good wish to the family and congrats and thanks to the brilliant midwives and doctors.” 

Yesterday, the first baby of 2020 born in Ireland was at the Rotunda Hospital at 12.12am when Victoria Setuke was born to first-time mother Patience Setuke. The baby girl weighed 3.23kg, just over seven pounds.

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