Victor and Digna Carpio are set to become New York State’s second couple – and perhaps the first Hispanics in the U.S to have sextuplets.
The couple, who already have a 7 year-old son, tried unsuccessfully for a second baby for will be welcoming 6 babies (4 boys and 2 girls) this winter.
Digna, 31, learned the unbelievable news nearly five months ago after she became ill during a workout at her gym.
“I suddenly felt faint, and my heart began racing wildly,” she told the Daily News in an exclusive interview.
She rushed to the emergency room at Flushing Hospital, where doctors told her she was two weeks pregnant.
A few weeks later, in a return visit for a sonogram, doctors said she was carrying quintuplets.
“They also warned me there was a mass behind the babies that could be a tumor. I thought I was going to die.”
The final shock came days later – the unknown mass was actually a sixth fetus.
“Mami, that’s too many babies,” her son shrieked. “They’ll destroy the house!”
He soon warmed to the idea of having enough brothers to form a basketball team. “Now he reads and sings to the babies every day,” his mother said proudly.
The mom-to-be, who stands just 5ft tall, is in her 21st week, but she looks ready to give birth at any moment. These days she finds it hard even to walk and spends most mornings in bed sleeping.
“She eats every 10 minutes because there’s not much room in her stomach for food,” her husband said. “Vegetables and low-salt stuff for the babies.”
Digna had such a rough go during the first four months of her pregnancy that her doctors tried to convince her reduce four of the babies to improve the chances of survival for the other two.
After suffering through miscarriages two times following the birth of her son, Digna refused to voluntarily give up another baby.
Luckily, the latest round of tests done just last week at Mount Sinai Hospital, show all six babies are developing well, and Diagna remains in excellent health.
The average gestation for sextuplets, medical experts say, is 29 weeks.
“When I get to 24 weeks, my doctors are going to admit me to the hospital,” she said. “For us, this is all a miracle. And now it’s in God’s hands.”
Not only are sextuplet births rare – less than 200 are known to have occurred worldwide – but the odds are even slimmer against all the babies surviving; only 14 sets of sextuplets have done so in the U.S.
The only previous example in New York City were the Boniellos, four girls and two boys, born to a Queens couple at Stony Brook University Medical Center on March 24, 1997.
The most recent U.S. set to survive were the Byler sextuplets in St. Petersburg, Fla., who just celebrated their first birthday, last September and the Mache sextuplets last July.
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