Quad birth a treat for Site C girl

2018-07-12 06:00
Inga Mafenuka,22, who gave birth to four babies, talks to MEC for Health Dr NomaFrench Mbombo during the latter’s visit to the Tygerberg Hospital. Behind her is Dr Dimitri Erasmus, the CEO of the hospital.PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

Inga Mafenuka,22, who gave birth to four babies, talks to MEC for Health Dr NomaFrench Mbombo during the latter’s visit to the Tygerberg Hospital. Behind her is Dr Dimitri Erasmus, the CEO of the hospital.PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

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Inga Mafenuka couldn’t believe her ears when a Khayelitsha doctor first informed her that she was carrying quadruplets.

Then, on Friday it happened. Inga (22), a young woman from A Section in Site C, gave birth to four babies, two boys and two girls, delivered through caesarean section.

It was only when she saw them in front of her that the reality of it all first sank in.

Then, everybody who is everybody in the province descended on the hospital to pay them a visit.

Mother and babies became instant celebrities­.

Dr NomaFrench Mbombo, the MEC for health, announced that it was a premature birth, seven months to be exact.

All the infants are kept in incubators, and whilst there, outsiders were not allowed in, even the prying media.

The babies are kept in the Intensive Care Unit of the hospital.

Mafenuka said: “I knew I was carrying quadruplets ... I found out during a routine visit to the Michael Mapongwana Clinic in Site B for a scan in March, but that didn’t sink in ... All along I was telling myself that the doctors were mistaken.

“Even as the doctors were showing me each baby after delivery, I kept telling myself they were pulling my leg, testing for my reaction. It only sank in once they lined in front of me at once,” she said, laughing.

She said she is the first person to give birth to quadruplets in the family.

“My family is very happy, especially their grandmother. She even named them: Bungcwele, Bubele, Buchule and Bunolo.”

Obstetrician Dr Celeste van Drunick, one of the doctors who assisted in childbirth, said it was a privilege to be part of the team that helped the woman deliver.

“It was a great team effort. There was a midwife for each baby. It was a privilege to be part of a wonderful journey. The experience was so extraordinary. I was bit nervous. But it was so wonderful taking out all the children without trouble. It was a completely uncomplicated surgery,” she said.

“Every time I had to deliver a child I had to cut a sack. They were separated, so that means they can be totally different when they are adults.

“They weighed 1.2kg, 1.01kg, 0.9kg and 0.8kg, respectively,” said Drunick.

She added that the mother looked calm and relaxed all along.

Mbombo said having quadruplets was rare.

“Out of 8000 babies delivered in the hospital per annum, quadruplets were only delivered once in a decade. It’s not something that is normal. That is why we are so excited, and not only because the deliveries went well.

“Even twin births is a complicated delivery, and to have quadruplets is quite a challenge­.

“Even the mom, after the caesarean, is responding very well,” she said.

Dr Mbombo appealed to the community and business people to support Mafenuka with all the necessities.

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