A British family was celebrating the birth of a triplet, more than 11 years after her twin sisters came into the world, the Daily Mail reported Monday.

Ryleigh Shepherd was conceived on the same day as twins Megan and Bethany, but while their embryos were implanted in their mother during fertility treatment in 1998, Ryleigh's was frozen for more than a decade.

Parents Lisa and Adrian Shepherd first turned to fertility treatment after she was diagnosed with endometriosis and polycystic ovaries.

In December 2009, they decided to go for another round of IVF, using the embryos still stored at the clinic near Birmingham, central England.

The treatment proved successful, with the proud mother welcoming a familiar face.

"When Ryleigh arrived, she looked like both the girls did when they were born 11 years before," she said. "It was uncanny. The girls are thrilled to have a sister, and they know that she was conceived at the same time that they were but has been in the freezer."
Lisa Shepherd added, "She's a really happy baby and has got a really good appetite -- it's as though she's making up for lost time."

It's hardly surprising that Ryleigh Shepherd is the image of her 11-year-old twin sisters when they were babies. For despite being born in different centuries, the three were all conceived on the same day.

While the embryos of twins Megan and Bethany were implanted in their mother in 1998, Ryleigh’s was frozen for more than 11 years.

Experts say they know of no other case where three siblings from the same round of fertility treatment have been born with such an age gap.
When Ryleigh arrived she looked like both the girls did when they were born 11 years before,’ said their mother Lisa, 37. ‘It was uncanny.’

Mrs Shepherd and husband Adrian, 45, married in 1994. They were keen to start a family but she had been diagnosed with endometriosis and polycystic ovaries so they knew their chances of her becoming pregnant naturally were slim.

‘I was given drug treatments to help me conceive, but nothing worked,’ she said at the family home in Walsall. ‘It was devastating.’

In September 1998, the couple underwent treatment at Midland Fertility Clinic. Doctors collected 24 eggs, 14 of which were successfully fertilised with Mr Shepherd’s sperm.

Two embryos were implanted and the remaining 12 placed into freezer storage.
Mrs Shepherd, a sales manager, said: ‘We knew there was a chance the treatment wouldn’t work, so we tried not to get our hopes up.
‘I did a pregnancy test after a week which was negative. That was so disappointing. But a week later when the clinic did another test, it was positive.’

Scans showed Mrs Shepherd was expecting twins.
The pregnancy went smoothly and the twins were born by caesarean section at Walsall Manor Hospital, Megan weighing 4lb 4oz and Bethany 3lb 3oz.

Their mother said: ‘It was so emotional when they were born and even though they had been six weeks early they made a really good recovery and we were allowed to take them home just three days later.’

When the girls were nine, the couple started to consider another baby. ‘We had been so busy raising the twins that it wasn’t until then that we stopped to think about having another one,’ said Mrs Shepherd, whose husband is an engineer for Network Rail.

‘So we asked the girls what they thought about having another addition to the family and they really wanted it.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1341766/Conceived-born-11-years-apart-Deep-frozen-sister-arrives-record-gap.html#ixzz19KjQXBLd


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